Growing Arabica or other coffee

I’m curious if anyone has any reference or info on coffee growing. I’ve got two Arabica plants; one is a few years old, one two years old. both were about 6 inches tall on arrival and have taken off. they live outside in the shade all the summer and fall then I bring them into the living room window for the winter.


you can see new growth on them here. I have no idea how these are grown for bean production but I’d like to get more through propagation or by planting the first beans they make- is anyone else growing these as a lark OR seriously as a crop? any resources I should read up on?

one day I would like to make my own cup of coffee start to finish (might be a pipe dream) (like my dreams of growing my own tobacco to smoke)

3 Likes

Myself and others in western San Diego county have grown coffee plants outdoors year-round. They are deep-rooted by nature. For potted plants, “tall #15” thick-wall nursery pots are worth a try as are large Stuewe treepots e.g. 10" x 20". I did not subject them to blaring afternoon sun, especially with the prospect of hot, low humidity summer winds. In my experience they did not like alkaline pH but were fine with 6.2 to 7.0. I fertilized them lightly with NPK proportions of 3:1:2 most of the year plus some Rose food in the spring.

The general rule of thumb for home-grown coffee is 2 plants per full-time coffee drinker. The difficult part is roasting. Slight differences in roasting temperatures and time can result in large differences in quality. Much has been written about it online by consumers who buy raw beans for home roasting.

2 Likes

I’ve done roasting before, it’s the growing I’m stuck with! so I need two more plants. how do they do in winter there, what temps? and I can move them to deeper pots certainly.

how long until they produce, do you think?

1 Like

The MI gardener youtube channel had a video or a series of videos that had some info. I had a little coffee seedling, but it decided not to stick around

2 Likes

I’m in zone 10b.

4-5 years from seedlings for home growers here.

2 Likes

Oh my. Tobacco is very easy to grow. you just need to match your end use to the right cultivar and cure process. I’m famous in our area for making tobacco chew sticks. Or big plug bricks. Kind of sooths the nerves folding it right.

2 Likes

@resonanteye

A friend told me his Dad about 100 years ago was a tobacco grower. Tobacco plants as you know are small and weak when babies. The way the old timers did it was they piled wood in a large pile for the year then lit it on fire. They grew the tobacco in the ashes. When i asked why they did that he said the fire kills the weed seeds and the ashes are nutrient dense. They started all tobacco there but did transplant many plants to the field. He called it white burley tobacco.

1 Like

my tobacco this year was a success, so now I’m working over the coffee!

wrapper tobacco finished leaves and I let one blossom.

2 Likes