Got that kit as a gift for valentines, was wondering if anyone knows anything about it?
It comes with a ceramic pot, some compost and hops seeds.
There's no information about which variety of hop and also I thought seeds were "illegal" in case a male plant sprouted.
Any input is appreciated.
That's a rather odd product! I suspect the intention is more to sell you a gimmick than something you can usefully grow...
So the issues would be:
- Growing hops from seed is awkward.
- You have no idea whether the plants you have grown will be male or female. Legality aside, you could waste a lot of time growing plants that will never flower.
- You have no idea what variety of hops you have. Are they aroma hops or flavour hops? What's the expected alpha acids? What size will the plant grow to?
- No matter what variety of hops they are, once they start shooting, they will outgrow the little pot within a few weeks.
So I guess you might have a nice desk plant for a short while (get it to grow up your office wall!) but from a brewing point of view it's pretty useless. You would be much better off getting a plant from a known stock.
I wouldn't say they're useless, just a new adventure.
If you just want a pretty climber, then just follow the instructions and plant out once the frost has cleared.
otherwise, if you want to make a go at actually using them I'd
- grab a seed tray from lidl and plant 2/3 seeds per section/pot, leaving indoors
- pinch out the weaker ones
- once it becomes a mess of little vines plant them in their own separate pots
- pot a couple in the beer mug thing it came in and place somewhere that she'll notice it and feel warm and fuzzy knowing that she's the best at valentine's day presents.
- when the weather improves put the pots out and provide them something to climb.
- if you see any small white flowers, snip that pot and kill the plant.
- you probably get any cones this year, but when you do see them tag the pot for proper planting in the winter.
It's true that you wont know what variety etc you have, but feck it.. They're a novelty item. have fun, make a smash, maybe it'll be great, maybe not.
but yeah, if you want to grow hops specifically to brew with, You would be much better off getting a plant from a known stock.
all in all, better than my valentine's day present, a bottle of Jim Beam. ah well, her heart was in the right place...