How do you grow coffee?



  1. 0 Votes

    Coffea arabica are easily propagated from seeds. You can find seeds for coffea and other rare and unusual plants online from The Whatcom Seed Company.

    The plants will grow to about 10 feet if given ample root room, but can be pruned if this is too big for the allotted space. Pruning may involve simple pinching to produce a bushier plant, or you may go as far as cutting it way back right down to where only two branches are left near the bottom of the trunk.

    The fruit are red when they ripen in the fall, with a sweet pulp surrounding the bean. Each coffee berry produces two beans. The coffee tree’s fruit does not all ripen at one time. In fact it will have blossoms and berries in various stages of ripening. Only the ripe berries can be picked. The berries cannot be picked when green since they will not ripen once picked.

    Once you have harvested sufficient beans to brew your first pot of ‘home grown’ coffee, you will have to roast them. There are many ‘home type’ roasters available on the market, which do an excellent job of evenly roasting your beans. Whether you are willing to go to the expense of purchasing one of these is up to you. It is possible to roast your own beans in the oven. This method will tend to smoke up the house a bit, and the smell of the burned off chaff will tend to linger in the house for quite some time. The amount and size of beans, as well as your altitude will make a difference in the roasting process. The beans should be placed in some form of perforated container, such as a steel strainer or vegetable steamer. Place them in a pre-heated, 250 degree F. oven for about seven minutes. Then increase the oven temperature to 450 degrees. In about ten minutes the beans should begin to crackle. This timing will depend on the temperature, heat capacity of the oven, and the beans; so keep an eye on them. When the beans start crackling, mix them up, to promote an even roast. Check their color every two minutes until they have achieved a color slightly lighter than the end color which you desire. As the beans cool, they will continue roasting. When they have completely cooled, store them in an air tight container in the refrigerator.

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