Our Goal for this Blog

Over the years we have received and continue to receive numerous phone calls and emails asking many different farm related questions. Our thought is that we would try out a blog to keep people up to date on what we are doing here on Puterbaugh Farms and at Hops Direct.

We will just jump right into where we are at in the growing season with a very brief look at what it took to get the hops to the stage they are in now. If interest is actually shown and people are looking for more information we will continue through the winter and pick up the beginning next spring, which will allow everyone to get a feel for what a full crop year looks like from a hop grower's perspective and all of the many challenges involved. We hope you enjoy.

Monday, July 14, 2008

Hop Powdery Mildew

Another major disease we deal with here on the farm is hop powdery mildew. Powdery mildew is a relatively new disease to our area and farm during our third generation of farming. There are some varieties we raise on the farm that are resistant to powdery mildew; these include our Nugget and Cascade. Most all of our other varieties are susceptible to powdery mildew with Galena and the super high alpha varieties (CTZ) being some of the worst.

Powdery mildew has been difficult to manage and can lead to low yields if it gets out of hand. Like downy mildew, powdery mildew starts out in or near the ground, but powdery mildew works its way from the bottom to the top of the bines very quickly, while downy mildew normally stays around the crown. All of our yards are checked at least once a week by professionals as well as by us when we drive around daily.

Burn-Back and stripping are one of the best ways to help control and defend against major powdery mildew outbreaks.

Sadly I do have a few pictures of powdery mildew:

Powdery Mildew spot on a leaf found about five feet from the ground. This is something we would rather not see in our yards.

Close up of burn-back in a high alpha hop yard, notice the foliage browning from the ground to about four feet up.

View down row of super high alpha's that have recently been burnt back.

Links to more information on Powdery Mildew:

Oregon State University -Plant Disease Control:

University of Idaho - Plant Soil Entomological Sciences:


Matt said...

Great information that you provide.

Could you expand on what you mean by 'burn back'? Do you actually use fire? How is it performed?

Keep up the good work,

Hopsdirect said...

Burn-back can be done with either herbicides or actual flames. We no longer use fire like we did in the past as fuel costs are very high, so we handstrip our worst yards and use herbicides on the other yards to control mildew.


tracysrocket said...

What is the active ingredient in the herbicides you use?


Hopsdirect said...

The Pacific Northwest Weed Management Book contains much of the information needed including the active ingredients on commonly used herbicides for burn back in hops. See section toward the bottom headed "Green Sucker Suppression in Hops" i.e. burn back.

Select the Chapter: Legumes, Winter Oats, Rape Seed, Corn, Hops
Then select the Section: HOPS


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