Humulus Lupulus ("a little wolf." because it grows among and twines around willows and chokes them as a wolf does a flock of sheep). - Family, Nettle. Color, green. Flowers, of two kinds the staminate in loose racemes or panicles, with a calyx of 5 sepals. The pistillate flowers grow in short, roundish spike beneath a single, broad, thin calyx-leaf or fruiting-bract. These. bracts, closely grouped and overlapping one another, become the scales of the hop-fruit or strobile. Fruit, an achene. The calyx bears resinous dots, which give the hop its special bitter flavor and odor. Leaves, opposite, serrate, deeply 3 to 7-lobed below, becoming alternate and entire above; on long petioles, 1 to 3 inches, with stipules. Fruit ripe in September and October. July and August.
The soporific hop-vine, useful in making yeast and malt liquors, is familiar both as a wild and cultivated vine. The young shoots have been cultivated and eaten like asparagus. Nova Scotia to New York, southward along the mountains to Georgia, westward to the Rocky Mountains in thickets and along streams.