Pulling Our Rhizomes

A well-tended Hopyard will produce for 50 years. But that doesn’t mean the bines actually live that long.

Some stop being productive sooner than others. And when that happens at the Rogue Farms Hopyard, we pull out the worn out rhizome and replace it with a younger one. And February is prime rhizome yanking season. We’ve been at it for about a week.

A pile of rhizomes at the Rogue Farms Hopyard.
A pile of rhizomes at the Rogue Farms Hopyard.

Rhizomes aren’t exactly roots. They’re more like an underground stem from which roots and bines will grow. Think of fresh ginger that you buy in the grocery store and you’ll know what a rhizome looks like.

The rhizomes of young, healthy plants can be divided and replanted in the same spot where the old plant was removed, or in a new location. The process is called vegetative propagation. Hop growers, farmers and gardeners use it spread their hops, ginger, asparagus and irises and other perennials.

You can buy your own rhizomes from dealers and start a hop garden in the backyard. Or you can just buy one of our Rogue Farms beers and save yourself the hassle.