Many amateur gardeners are passionate about growing a wide variety of vegetables, fruits, and herbs at home. However, the majority commonly shy away from growing coffee plants in their home garden. These gardeners may not know that it doesn’t take rocket science to grow coffee at home successfully.
Have you ever considered taking steps to grow coffee at home hassle-free? Luckily, you don’t have to travel the journey alone. Indeed, many coffee enthusiasts are increasingly embracing the idea of cultivating coffee gardens at home.
If you are among such coffee lovers, why not take your time to examine our easy guide?
You will quickly learn every nook and cranny of growing coffee plants at home.
Learn to Grow Potted Coffee Plants at Home to Reduce Endless Waiting Time
You’ll need a little patience and preparation to succeed in growing coffee at home. Yes, patience and deliberate practice are essential because coffee plants are well-known for their legendary slow growth and maturity rate.
For instance, when you begin buying coffee seeds and planting them, you will need to give them time to mature. You may have to wait for eight to ten years. Most coffee growers consider this to be too long. However, following this simple step-by-step guide on how to fast track the process, from planting to harvesting, you can make some headway.
For starters, to reduce the long wait for the coffee maturity, consider getting an already potted coffee plant; this guarantees a shorter maturity period, down to 3 or 4 years. This waiting time may still seem long; nevertheless, it is more realistic for many farmers.
Further, you can buy potted coffee plants online. Amazon is the go-to for this in most cases. If you are lucky enough to have a specialty greenhouse in your neighborhood, you may even walk in and personally place your order.
Select the Top Varieties of Coffee Plants in the World For Best Results
Coffee varieties are generally classified according to their area of origin. The most common types are Robusta (Coffee canephora), and Arabica (Coffee arabica).
Liberica (Coffee Liberica) and Excelsa (coffee exclesa) are less common.
Among the four types of coffee, Robusta is the most prominent. Originating from sub-Saharan Africa, Robusta coffee accounts for 30% of world production. This variety of coffee is renowned for its ability to muster resistance to diseases and varied climatic conditions. It is also known to grow at different altitudes and guarantees excellent production. Moreover, it has a lower acidity rate.
If you are genuinely passionate about having a unique blend of bitter chocolate flavors, consider Coffee Robusta the natural choice for your prized home garden coffee.
Coffee Arabica, which originated from Ethiopia though Brazil, ranks high as the most popular variety. Accounting for 70% of the coffee produced globally, Arabica is twice as expensive as most other varieties. It is, however, more challenging to grow.
Generally, this variety can only survive in highland regions.
If you are looking for a beautiful variety of coffee with a light taste and a tinge of sweetness as well as perfectly flavored high-quality organic beans, go for Arabica coffee; it is your best bet for the cherished garden home project.
Easy Tips to Successfully Care for Tender Coffee Plants
To effectively grow coffee plants at home, you first need to have a deep pot with proper drainage. The most preferred is the plastic pot. This is primarily due to its light-weight nature. However, you can also use a clay pot.
Ensure to place the coffee pot in a warm and humid place. Further, the surrounding environment should be less windy. Place the pot facing either the western or eastern direction.
Next, ensure that the coffee plants are kept away from the sun’s direct exposure, especially in the afternoon. Generally, the diffused sun is the most preferred form of exposure; exposure to the full sun usually results in severe leaf burns.
Next, see to it that the soil in the coffee pot is penetrable. Coffee plants have relatively long penetrating roots. Ensure that the jar contains a lot of soil with high humus content and manure. The soil should be slightly acidic, with a pH level not exceeding 6.
Further, your coffee plant should be well- watered. Use high-quality pure and soft water. Carefully pour the water from the top of the pot; this is because the coffee plant requires humid air to mist the leaves and help it grow.
Lastly, ensure that the pot’s soil is always moist but avoid making it soggy. If your coffee plant grows in a cold climate, you should reduce watering, especially during winter.
How to Fertilize Your Coffee Plant Excellently
Regularly fertilize your coffee plant. Fertilizing the coffee plant will help it attain the maximum height and achieve healthy growth. During the warm season, have a habit of fertilizing every two to three months; in the spring and the summer.
Always ensure you have used a balanced houseplant fertilizer. Avoid fertilizing during the winter and fall when the plant is still resting. Keep in mind that a well-tended coffee plant can grow up to six feet tall (1.8 meters)!
Therefore, maintain a daily pruning routine for excellent plant care.
When fertilizing your plant, exercise caution. Be careful not to over-fertilize or under- fertilize. For instance, if you realize your coffee plant is turning brown, this should tell you the plant is getting over-fertilized. Thus, reduce the number of days you apply the fertilizer until the leaves begin to retain their trademark green color.
You will need to transfer the plants to a larger container as they grow. This will make the roots get space to spread and grow. Indeed, a well-tended coffee plant can grow up to ten feet tall (3 meters).
During the first few years, the coffee plant may not show any signs of flowering. As earlier noted, coffee plants usually need more time to mature. However, once it begins to develop, the plant will start to grow some small white flowers. Typically, these flowers only last a few days then wither away.
The white flowers’ presence indicates that the plant has now matured and ready to bear fruits.
Exercise Patience Until Your Plants Ripen Fully
After one or two months of successful fertilization, you will notice some little green fruits, otherwise known as coffee cherries, just beginning to grow. At this point, don’t worry about manual cross-pollination issues; coffee plants are designed to self-fertilize. The coffee berries’ appearance is an indicator that you are a few steps to harvesting your delicious coffee beans.
Be prepared to wait another eight to nine months after the cherries’ formation before you can harvest the coffee. Sadly, not all the coffee cherries will reopen simultaneously. Get ready for the challenging job of checking your coffee plant to determine whether the cherries are ripe.
Caution: Don’t get too excited; your coffee cherries will not be ready to harvest until they turn firm and bright red. This can take between eight to nine months from formation. Also, not all the coffee cherries will ripen at precisely the same time.
You will have to watch your coffee plant every day to see if any cherries are ripe yet.
How to Successfully Grow and Harvest Your Coffee Beans at Home
As earlier noted, coffee seeds that you plant in a home pot may take between three to four years to reach maturity. Coffee fruit, commonly referred to as the cherry, is typically bright to deep red when ripe.
In a year, you will get one major harvest. However, in some countries, there are two annual flowering seasons. The first is known as the “main flowering,” and the second is the “secondary crop.”
In many countries, coffee-picking is usually done by hand; this is known as handpicking. In other countries, it is done using machines, especially in large plantations.
You can harvest your coffee in two different ways:
The first is known as strip picking. Here, all the cherries are stripped off the branch, either by machine or hand. The other is selective picking. It involves picking only the ripe cherries; these are picked individually. Pickers usually choose only the cherries, which are at the peak of ripeness.
After harvesting, wash the coffee cherries with water to separate overripe coffee berries or floaters from undeveloped coffee cherries, sticks, and leaves. You can then move to the crucial part of drying your coffee to reduce the beans’ moisture content.
Voila! Your coffee is finally ready for roasting, grinding, and brewing.
Growing coffee plants at home should not be a complicated process. It should not take much of your time and attention. You only need to exercise patience as you wait for your coffee to mature.
Follow these simple suggested processes to enjoy the incredible and rewarding experience of growing coffee conveniently at the comfort of your home.