Hello Hopheads from the summer of 2016 here at Orange County Hops. School is out, the hops are growing faster than the weeds, and the weather has been beautiful so far this growing season. Ed and Jerry just finished cutting the hay yesterday, and the big yield indicated how favorable the 1st half of the growing season was for grass.
Our hops have begun their budding process with very tall cascades and chinooks that are on pace to double our yield from last year. May was an average month for rainfall, and although June has been extremely dry, most of our plants received ample water from our irrigation system and have responded favorably. We are constantly tweaking, fixing, and working on this system, and find it is not as reliable as we had hoped when we installed it three years ago.
Perhaps our irrigation troubles have contributed to the slow growth of most of our centennial crop, which in its 3rd season has yet to keep pace with the other two varieties. This may be our last attempt at growing centennial. Next year we might replant some of those weaker rows with a variety that grows better on this farm.
In any event, we are focused on the buds which you can see are plentiful and hearty! Here is a skyward view of one of our cascade beauties!
We are enjoying our time on the farm this summer. Alva’s new farm vehicle has been a favorite chariot for all who visit. It provides a very efficient way to get around the farm!
We are grateful to Papa and Uncle Jay of Golf Cars of Coastal Carolina for this wonderful addition to our farm
As with most of my updates, I will share with you some of the wonderful wildlife that frequents our property. This huge snapper decided to come out for a sunbath and I was lucky enough to get a good photo before he sank back into the water.I would estimate his shell to be an oval about 16″ x 20″. I would not like to encounter him in a dark pool of water!
During the month of July we will continue in our efforts to tend to our crops, weeding, watering, and nurturing. Stay tuned for the next rainy day here in the Hudson Valley when I will probably turn to the computer keyboard once again to provide another update. Until then- stay cool, stay healthy, stay positive, and enjoy the days ahead as we watch nature work her magic. Hop to it!
To your Hoppines,