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Posts from the ‘Rogue Ales’ Category

Rain, Rain Go Away

Big thunderstorms moved in overnight at Rogue Farms in Tygh Valley, Oregon, forcing us to hold off harvesting our Risk™ malting barley.

Maybe we’ll be able to resume this afternoon, maybe tomorrow or the next day. It’s all up to Mother Nature.

We can’t harvest wet barley. Too much moisture in the grain when it’s stored in the silo can lead to all sorts of problems ranging from fungal disease to spontaneous combustion. You read that right. Wet grain can get so hot all on it’s own that it will suddenly burst into flames.

Storm clouds over our fields of Risk malting barley, where we were supposed to be harvesting.

Storm clouds over our Risk™ malting barley. This is the field we hope to harvest today.

But that’s the least of our troubles this time of year.

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Going With The Grain

Ever wonder what happens when we're done floor malting, micro malting, smoking, roasting and mashing our barley, wheat and rye?

We don't like seeing anything go to waste, so we give away our spent grains to farmers near the Rogue Brewery in Newport, Oregon.

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Flower Power For Our Honeybees

This is the greatest time of year to be a Rogue Farms honeybee.

We’re in the middle of the summer nectar flow, when gazillions of wildflowers, blackberry flowers and clover fill the fields surrounding our farm.

It’s the honeybee’s version of an all you can eat for free buffet. But for our bees, that’s not good enough.

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Estate Grown Hops

We’re about a week away from the summer solstice, aka the longest day of the year.

On June 20th, the sun will rise over Rogue Farms at 5:25am and won’t drop below the horizon until 9:02pm. 15 hours, 36 minutes and 31 seconds of daylight.

This is when is our hop bines go into overdrive. Long periods of daylight trigger the natural hormones within hops that cause them to grow several inches in a day, several feet in a week. You can literally watch the hops grow.

So how’s this year’s crop coming along?

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From Ground To Glass

The next several days are going to be stunning at Rogue Farms in Tygh Valley. Lots of sun and warm days in the upper 40’s and 50’s.

Which means it’s time for us to get to work.

This morning we began plowing, discing and harrowing the 100 acres of fields where we’re going to seed this year’s crop of Dare™ malting barley.

Plowing 2

Plowing breaks up the sod and field debris that’s left over from last year and pushes it back into the soil.

We want to give our Dare™ seeds the best start possible on the growing season. So we plow, disc and harrow to break up the clumps of dirt and sod into smaller and smaller pieces, and to return left over field debris back into the soil where it breaks down into natural humus. When we’re done the soil will be smooth, easy to plant, and full of nutrients.

Discing and Harrowing

Here’s what our fields look like after weeks of plowing, discing and harrowing.

While that’s going on, we’re also inspecting our irrigation system, making repairs, and moving the big wheels into place.

Irrigation Wheels Risk Barley Oct 2012 web

Irrigation wheels in a field of Rogue Farms Risk malting barley.

If Mother Nature continues to cooperate, we’ll plant our Dare™ malting barley during the first half of April. Rogue Farms Dare™ barley is a spring variety that grows quickly during a season that lasts about four months. So mark your calendars for late July or early August. That’s when we expect to harvest this year’s crop.

From there, we’ll send it to the Farmstead Malt House where we’ll floor malt and micro malt the grain in small artisan batches. Then we send the bags of malt to the Rogue Brewery in Newport where we’ll smoke and roast it into a variety of flavors for Brewmaster John Maier. Dare™ barley and Dare™ malts are just of the proprietary palate of flavors we grow here at Rogue Farms.

The journey from ground to glass isn’t fast and it isn’t easy. But as agri-fermenters we believe growing, malting, roasting and smoking your own barley makes a difference that you can taste in every bottle of Rogue Ales and Spirits.

Please join us at Rogue Farms this spring as we begin another season of growing beers and spirits.

roguefarms grow the revolution

Coverup At The Hopyard

We're going to let you in on a little secret. We just planted barley in our hop rows at Rogue Farms in Independence, Oregon.

We are not replacing our beloved hops with barley.

Instead, this is about the terroir of the Wigrich Appellation and the wonderful alluvial soil where we grow ingredients for our beers and spirits.

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Rogue Farms Hop Harvest Starts Today!

john hop harvestThe day we’ve been working for is here. The 2013 Rogue Farms hop harvest starts today with our Freedom Hops. They were the first of our varieties to grow cones this spring and the first to be ripe enough for picking.

John Maier is coming to personally set aside some of the Freedom Hops for this year’s batch of Wet Hop Ale. We’ll stuff the cones into burlap bags, load them into the truck, and then John will haul them back over the Coast Range to the Brewery in Newport where he’ll put them in the Wet Hop Ale kettle. From bine to brew in 2 hours and 17 minutes. Now that’s fresh.

But before we can pick a single bine, we’ve got to make sure all the picking and processing equipment is in ship shape.

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Say “Hi” To The New Rogue Farms Chicks

The arrival of turkey chicks is always a surprise here at Rogue Farms. They just show up one day, seemingly out of nowhere.

That has to do with the secretive habits of our hen Juniper. She disappears every now and then, sometimes returning with chicks and sometimes not.

This week, she came back with four cute, tiny fuzzballs.

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Peño Envy

Jalapeno Planting13 webNo one likes a dull revolution.

And to make sure the Rogue Farms Grow Your Own revolution never gets dull or flavorless, we planted our first crop of jalapeño peppers.

240 plants. One-quarter acre. We dug each hole and planted each pepper pot by hand.

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Beer Begins In The Dirt

Yaquina Rhizome web cropBeer begins in the dirt.

We were reminded of that this week when we planted our new variety of aroma hops here at Rogue Farms. No fancy hop planting equipment to do the job for us. Just a bunch of shovels, hole digging, and a ton of dirt.

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the drunken cyclist

I have three passions: wine, cycling, travel, family, and math.

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