Guide helps farmers grow healthy hops

TIPPECANOE COUNTY, Ind. (WLFI) – A Purdue University guide is helping farmers around the state keep their hops healthy.

The Purdue Extension guide shows farmers what disease, pests and weeds to look out for. Spider mites, potato leafhoppers and mildew are the most common problems found when growing hops.

This year about dozen Indiana farmers decided to starting growing hops.

Purdue research assistant Nastasha Cerruti said growing popularity in craft beers has led to more hops fields.

“It’s just a new crop. It’s something that you don’t need a lot of land for. They’re a really cool crop,” said Cerruti.

Purdue built a half-acre hops field this year to research which species grow best in the area.

Cerruti said they didn’t spray any pesticides or insecticides on the hops to capture what the crop looks like at its worst. Next year, she said they will look at the best ways to take care of the crops.

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