Mountain View Hops began farming hops in the early spring of 2016 with 8 varieties. Since then, we have grown and trialed over 25 different publicly available cultivars of hops to date. Our trials on different hops and their growth characteristics on our hopyard continue to this day.
Over this timeframe, we have been able to gather lots of useful information from our many trials. This information includes fungicide, pesticide, and herbicide efficacy, as well as growth and harvest data for all the trialed cultivars. Our testing and evaluations are an ongoing process that sees many new changes and updates as the years progress.
Our hops cones have been used by local breweries, wineries, and kombucha producers in both wet and dried form. We continually test our cones, using a local university, for moisture content when drying and for Alpha Acid levels. Sensory analysis combined with physical testing, along with growth characteristics, yields, and pest/disease resistance have all helped MVH to determine which varieties grow well in our hopyard.
Since hops have not been grown in Virginia as a commercial commodity for over 100 years, much of the knowledge has been lost to time. Furthermore, even if that knowledge were to be obtained, many new obstacles to growing hops have presented themselves in our modern times. These include pests, diseases, available cultivars, and modern farming practices.
Virginia is a unique state to grow hops in as it boasts so many different growing regions from high mountains to low flatlands, and all the way to coastal waters. There are hops growers in each and every one of these areas who are learning what works best for them for their particular situation and farming styles. With this amount of diversity, no one farming practice, hop variety, or location can lay claim to being the "best". It is with this "out-of-the-box" thought process and determination on finding new and possibly better ways to farm hops that so many have gotten into growing this crop in our state.
Our desire at MVH, through the Ag Division, is to help small-scale hops growers in our state and general area, through education, to grow hops well with information gathered from our farm. While we acknowledge there are many variables and differences to growing hops in our state, we also recognize that there are common similarities. It is our hope that the information we gather at our hopyard can be used to further enlighten current and future hops growers across the state to the similar difficulties we all face. United with this knowledge, we can work together to bring the agriculture of hops farming back to levels not seen in over 100 years in Virginia.
These are the publicly available hops varieties that MVH has determined grow well at our hopyard and what we like about them.
These are the varieties that MVH has trialed and found to be sub-par for our hopyard and the reasons why they were removed.
These are the varieties that MVH is currently trialing. Some information may be available, but in most cases, it is not.
MVH is continually testing various hops farming practices and announcing the results. Find out here what our past data has revealed.