Females Rhizomes Needed to Brew Beer?

“Do I need a female rhizomes for brewing beer? ~ Unknown”


There are some occasions when I receive a question from one of my blog readers and I am just perplexed.  The above is one of these.  Of course, this one did make me laugh a bit at first.

By ‘female rhizome’, I assume you are asking if you need a female hop plant (Humulus lupulus)  in order to have the components for brewing your own beer.

While I’m sure some of my manly men readers will not enjoy this article, I’ve got to be honest:

To brew good beer, you only want female rhizomes.

Male and female flowers of the hop plant develop on separate plants or are dioecious.  Because viable seeds are undesirable for brewing beer, only female plants are grown in hopfields to prevent pollination and the potential for seeds to be in the buds.  Female plants are propagated vegetatively and sold bareroot or male plants are culled if plants are grown from seeds.

As for the seeds, they do not germinate well.  There are a number of issues with high dormancy and low longevity and vigor.  I recommend that you purchase your hops as plants.  The four best varieties are:

–Cascade:  A popular variety with disease resistance and high aroma that is known for its high yields and large, elongated flowers.  It adds flavor and aroma to light lagers.  See more here:  http://www.jungseed.com/dp.asp?pID=30424

–Mt. Hood:  An aromatic hop that produces more flowers per vine and has very good resistance.  Mid-range amount of alpha-acids than other varieties.  See more here:  http://www.jungseed.com/dp.asp?pID=30426

–Nugget:  A high alpha-acid (bittering) type of hop that is used for adding body and flavor to all types of beer.  It is a popular commercial variety that is now available for home gardeners.  It is disease resistant, vigorous, and has high yields.  See more here:  http://www.jungseed.com/dp.asp?pID=30425

–Williamette:  Lower alpha-acid variety used commercially for English Ales and spicy beers.  See more here:  http://www.jungseed.com/dp.asp?pID=30427







© Mertie Mae Botanics LLC and Horticulture Talk!, 2011. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Mertie Mae Botanics LLC and Horticulture Talk! with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.


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