Humulus Plant Growing & Care Guide for Gardeners

In this Gardener's HQ guide, we'll explore cultivating Humulus plants in your garden, indoor spaces, and other settings.

Hop: Cultivation & Garden Use

Although the Humulus plant is a hardy perennial climber it is normally treated as if it is a half hardy annual inn the garden.

It has lobed foliage and produces hops in the autumn. Some common names for Humulus are Hop, Yunnan and Japanese Hop.

Humulus lupulus
Humulus lupulus – Hops by Amandabhslater; creative commons.

Humulus japonica
Humulus japonica variegata by SuperFantastic; creative commons.

Humulus Plant Growing and Care Guide

Common Names: Hop: Common, Japanese, Asian, Yunnan.
Life Cycle: Hardy perennial commonly grown as a half hardy annual by gardeners.
Height: 24 to 600 inches (60 to 1250 cm).
Native: Europe, Asia, North America.
Growing Region: Zones 3 to 9.
Flowers: Late spring, summer and/or autumn.
Flower Details: Yellow, red, white, blue, pink, orange. Daisy-like ray and disc florets. Bell-shaped. Tubular. Inconspicuous pale green; plants are grown for their attractive silvery or bronze spearheads.
Foliage: Bine: stiff hairs on stout stems. Heart shaped leaves (Cordate). Variegated. Lobed.
Sow Outside: 1/4 inch. Before last frost (summer flowers); early summer (autumn flowers); or in autumn (spring flowers). Spacing 30 to 40 inches (75 to 100 cm).
Sow Inside: Germination time: one month. Temperature 70°F (21°C). Seven or eight weeks in advance. Transplant outdoors after the last frost.
Requirements: Full sunlight or light shade. Good drainage. Most soil types and conditions but best results in rich and moist soil. Provide trellis. Regular watering.
Propagate: dividing or cuttings from tips in spring.
Family: Cannabaceae.
Miscellaneous: Plants are dioecious. Female hop flowers are called cones. The female plants are used for making beer. During the growing season hop bines can grow up to 20 inches (50 cm) per week. Has very long roots making it an ideal plant to grow in dry areas.

How to Grow Hop (Humulus) Plants

It depends upon when you want the hops to flower as to when you sow the seed.

For Autumn flowers sow in the summer. If you want the hops to flower in late spring, then sow the prior autumn. Sowing at the beginning of spring will result in summer flowers.

In all cases sow the seeds at a depth of about 6 mm (1/4 inch) into either a sunny or lightly shaded area of the garden that has good drainage. Hops like to grow in a rich and moist soil.

It usually takes just under a month for hop seeds to germinate at a temperature of 21 to 24 degrees Centigrade (70 to 75°F).

If you want to start Humulus plants off indoors, then plant seeds about two months before you put them out.

Caring for Hops in the Garden

Once growing hops will require regular watering/ As as Humulus plant species are climbers, they will require a trellis or similar support to grow upon.

Common Questions

How many members does the Humulus genus have?

The Humulus genus, commonly known as hops, has three species. They are widely cultivated for use in brewing beer.

Do members of Humulus make a good garden or landscaping plant?

Yes, Humulus can be a good choice for a garden or landscape, especially if you're interested in brewing your own beer. Its vigorous vines also make an excellent screen.

Which Humulus species are most frequently grown by gardeners?

The Humulus lupulus, or common hop, is the species most often grown due to its use in beer production.

Are members of the Humulus plant genus fragrant?

Yes, the female flowers or 'cones' of Humulus lupulus have a distinctive, pleasing aroma and are used to flavor and stabilize beer.

What is the perfect location to grow Humulus?

Humulus prefers full sun to part shade and well-drained soil. The plants are vigorous climbers and need a trellis or other support structure.

Is Humulus invasive in the USA, if so in which states?

Currently, Humulus is not considered invasive in the USA.

How do I remove Humulus plants from my garden?

To remove Humulus, cut back the vines and dig out the root system. Keep an eye out for any sprouts that may re-emerge and remove them promptly.


The Humulus genus, part of the Cannabaceae family, includes climbing perennials known for their cone-like structures. Native to temperate regions of the Northern Hemisphere, these plants are famous for their use in brewing beer.

To cultivate Humulus, plant in a location with full sun and well-drained soil. Regular watering is necessary for optimal growth. Propagation can be done through rhizome cuttings, typically planted in the spring.

I hope that you enjoyed this guide on how to grow Humulus plants. You may also enjoy the following Gardener's HQ beer relted growing guides: How to grow Artemisia vulgaris and Achillea millefolium plants.