HVG Germany: Hopfen

 

Leaves and Laterals

blaetter_bild1The leaves of the hop plant grow from the nodes of the bine. First of all two small narrow adversifolate stipules appear. A long-stemmed deciduous leaf grows from each axil of a stipule. The lower, older leaves are generally five-lobed, the middle ones three-lobed and the upper, young leaves have one single lobe. All the leaves are dentate. The underside of the leaves is smooth, but the top surface is very hairy.

When the hops have climbed about halfway up the trellis by mid-June they form laterals. These grow from the axils of the deciduous leaves and have exactly the same structure as the main shoots. These laterals originating from the lower part of the plant can reach lengths of up to 1.5 metres but are always shorter further up towards the top. As the hop cones grow almost exclusively on the laterals their number and development is decisive for the yield.