Coffee is one of the most popular beverages worldwide. Whether it’s a latte, cappuccino, or macchiatto; it’s highly likely you’ve drank a coffee beverage before, or even within the past week. Despite coffee’s popularity, not many consumers know how it is grown. Have you ever wanted to grow a few of your own coffee plants within your backyard? Perhaps you haven’t ever even thought that it’s possible to grow a coffee plant at home. Well, it is. Read on for details on how to grow coffee the right way.
Picking the Right Coffee Plant Seeds
Green coffee cherries can be bought at any local green coffee supplier. Ensure they’re fresh to cut short the germination period once you plant the seeds; as older coffee seeds take longer to germinate , as compared to fresh ones. Also, ensure you go for your preferred coffee type; with arabica and robusta species being the most popular.
Preparing the seeds for Planting
Once you’ve bought the fresh seeds, you should soak them in a water container for an entire day’s duration; after which you’re supposed to drain them,awaiting sowing. Soaking the seeds will significantly reduce the time it takes for the seeds to germinate once they’re sowed.
Requirements and Suitable Conditions for Planting
You will need a large plastic or clay container within which you can grow your coffee tree. The container should be filled with an appropriate amount of soil. Don’t forget to consult a local plant expert for insight as pertains where you can find the right type of soil to grow your coffee seeds in. Ideally, coffee trees thrive in penetrable soil that is rich in manure/humus. Also, make sure the soil you use is slightly acidic, for faster seed germination. If you opt to grow your coffee tree indoors, additional requirements for your micro-climate would include temperatures of no less than 45 degrees Fahrenheit and no more than 85 degrees Fahrenheit.
Taking Care of Your Coffee Plants
Coffee plants are ill-adapted to withstanding direct sunlight. To safeguard your coffee plants from solar damage, you should ensure they’re only accessing diffused sunlight and that they’re sufficiently watered. Ensure you take precaution when watering, to avoid water-logging. Alternatively, you could opt for a hardy variety that is capable of thriving even when exposed to direct sunlight.
During the growth stage, the plant should be fertilized regularly. Also, remember to feed the soil with an iron fertilizer at least once annually; as an acid-loving plant like coffee is prone to iron deficiency. You also need to prune your plant every now and then, to facilitate lateral branching and higher yield. During winter seasons, it is advisable to bring your coffee plant pot indoors; in case you had it placed in your backyard. This is because coffee trees die when exposed to frosty conditions. While growing indoors, you’ll still need to ensure that the plant continues to receive an adequate amount of light; either by using artificial grow light, or placing the pot near a window that receives sunlight.
Coffee plants take a long time to fruit, usually three-five years. It is- however- well worth the wait; as a fully-grown coffee tree can produce up to 1.5 pounds of coffee cherries. What’s more, the natural allure that this beautiful tree would add to your backyard’s curb appeal cannot be overlooked.