Homegrown Cascade Hops Question

[attachment=0]IMG_0288.jpg[/attachment][attachment=1]IMG_0287.jpg[/attachment]Hi All, I am growing Cascade hops in my garden. I have a ton of really big cones–pictures provided–but thing is, there is NO discernible scent. I see nice yellow lupulin under the bracts (I don’t recall them being so curled as this last year), but I’m not getting any odor.

They are starting to feel papery, and I don’t want to leave them on the bine too long (which I did last
year waiting for the scent).

Here are my questions:

–I had panned to pick and put them right in the brew pot, but I read that drying them might bring out the characteristic odor. Do you think this might be worth trying?

–Does anyone know if this variety of hop has a particularly slim window of “ripeness”

I really appreciate your help!


Put them between your palms and rub them together to heat them up and release the scent. I wait untill some start to get a little brown. They are probably close so keep an eye on them. Mine have varied in strength from one year to the next. I’ve only been growing for three years so I’m not an expert by any means. Just throwing it out there.

Whoa! This is very strange that you posted this today. I have the same thing with my nugget hops this year. The cone growth is strange and there is basically no hop smell even when I rub them between my hands. At this time last year I had lots of hops that smelled wonderful when I just peeled them apart. This year I got nothing. And I have lots of them. Where are you located? I am in New York on Long Island.

I’m going out to sniff mine now

Ok. My cascade are still green so I’m not worried. I’m across the lake from you basement, new haven county maybe a little behind you but I don’t generally harvest my cascade until September, not sure abou nugget,

I’ve got 3 different varieties and Cenntenial is getting close to picking. I’ve got good aroma there, and it seems golding is way slow and Williamette just quit all together… I think it is a strange year as everything really budded/blossomed out big time over here. Haven’t seen that fer many years, and all different types of plants…. except hops :cry: Sneezles61

Hi thanks for responding! SO I just went out and rubbed one between my palms as you suggested. No hop odor, just a grassy smell, so maybe they’re not done? They are starting to turn brown at the tips.
I live in Kings Park on the north shore of long island, maybe they just need more time in my region?


Hi, so I experimented further with my Cascades this weekend. I picked a bunch of cones, some that looked quite ripe and some younger. I dried them completely to see if it would bring out the aroma,
and then I steeped them in boiling water (would have tried wort if I had any on hand). After all of this there was still NO hint of aroma.

In contrast, my Tettnanger hops have been fragrant on the bine. I have already picked and brewed with them, and have another round that I will be picking shortly.

I think this might be the last season for north-shore of Long Island Cascade hops. Think I may pull them out and try another variety for next season.


They may need a little more time. They should be papery on the vine. The lupin should be ready to release. Mine are not ready in CT I believe we have similar climate.

Hi Brew Cat, Thanks for responding-that’s good to know. What’s freaking me out is that I already see several cones that are completely brown and so dry they fall apart in my hand–I am concerned that I am missing a window of opportunity. I’ll keep a vigil and will be sure to report back.
My hops broke ground in April, about when did yours come up?


Hastings Minnesota
I’ve got some “Nugget” hops growing and I’m a bit anxious on when to pull them too. 3 days ago I had to split one of the cones to get the sticky resin and the smell. So I’m guessing not ready yet, but soon.
I plan on vacuum sealing and freezing. Does this sound ok? If not I’ll have to give a bunch of them away to you guys and gals…

I wonder if the cool wet early summer had something to do with this lack of aroma. We had an extended cool wet period that lasted well into July (northern OH). My Cascade hops produced nice cones, but hardly any flavor. I did note that new cones that came on later, after the weather changed are more aromatic, but still not like last year. My Goldings and Kent Goldings produced absolutely nothing. Hallertau had very small cones with some aroma, but not a lot. Tettnanger had nice cones and had some aroma and Centennial had quite small cones but were aromatic. I kept thinking that they needed more time, but that ultimately did not help and I picked everything last weekend. By then the leaf areas were spreading and quite dry. I’m guessing from looking at other comments, that this was a poor weather year for hops in this part of the country.

I live in Western NY. I would think we have less temperate of a climate than on LI, although I do live near Lake Ontario which allows for many vineyards to thrive here, just like on LI. This is my second year growing hops and my first year growing Cascade. I got 2 oz of dried cones last night from the one bine that did anything, so I was happy. Some of the cones are 3 inches long. I didn’t know really what to expect. They have some aroma, but I agree not as much as my other varieties. I kept a close eye on them this past couple of weeks. They kept looking too pretty, and then we got a week of high 80’s to low 90’s weather while I was busy working. Some had more brown on them than I would have liked. Based on harvest weights and dried weights, it looks like the harvest moisture was down to 70% which is too dry. They smell ok albeit a faint smell of freshly made hay. Not a grass smell. More of a hay smell. I’ll probably still use them at flame out or something. Probably not for dry hopping. So I would say your Cascade hops can’t be too far behind mine in being ready to pick. If they have brown spots and feel crinkly like dried paper when you squeeze them, they probably aren’t going to get any better.