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Coffee Plant · Wiki

Coffee Tree - Source: (zick) Boita
Source: (zick) Boita
Botanical Name: Coffea arabica

The coffee plant is the source of the world's most popular breakfast beverage; not many realize, however, that it makes a beautiful house plant that is easy to grow.

This member of the Rubiaceae family is one of 90 in the Coffea genus. Coffea arabica is believed to be the first species of coffee to be cultivated, being grown in southwest Arabia for well over 1,000 years. It is an evergreen shrub that has glossy, dark-green leaves with ruffled edges on willowy stems.

Coffee plant can reach heights of over 15 ft its native tropical habitat, but will stay much smaller when confined to a pot; you can also trim it back to control its size.

Prune the coffee plant back in the spring to keep it bushy and full; pruning will also give it an attractive shape. Use clean pruning shears to cut the stem at a 45° angle, 1/4-inch above a leaf axil (the junction where a leaf attaches to the stem). Prune off any top growth to keep your coffee plant at a manageable size.

Repot in the spring, moving to a pot 1 size larger; use a pot with a drainage hole to avoid soggy soil.

After 3 or 4 years the Coffea arabica plant will produce star-shaped, sweetly scented, white flowers. These flowers are followed by green fruits, which change to red then to almost black as they ripen; a process that takes several months. Inside each ripened fruit are 2 seeds (or beans) that when properly roasted can be ground and made into coffee.

growing coffee plants indoors is easy, as they are vigorous growers and are have a long lifespan; they make attractive house plants, just don't expect them to offer a morning cup of coffee, as it could take a few years before you see many fruit.

You can find Coffea arabica at several online nurseries, but if you're looking for a more compact plant, you should look for the cultivar Coffea arabica "Nana".


Care Tips

Origin: Southern Asia and Tropical Africa

Height: Up to 6 ft (1.8 m) grown indoors, ifconfined to a pot. You can prune Coffea arabica quite a bit in the spring to keep it at a manageable size.

Light: Keep in bright light, shaded from the direct sun.

Water: Keep soil thoroughly moist in the spring and Summer, but keep barely moist in Autumn and Winter; always use tepid water for watering your houseplants.

Humidity: Requires moist air, you can use a cool mist humidifier for best results.

Temperature: Average room temperatures between 65-75°F (18-24°C). Coffea arabica can withstand cooler temperatures in the Autumn and Winter when growth slows down, but it's not tolerant of freezing temperatures.

Soil: Peat moss based potting mix with horticultural sand added to provide good drainage.

Fertilizer: Feed every 2 weeks during the spring and Summer with a balanced liquid fertilizer diluted in half.

Propagation: Sow fresh seeds in the spring; cuttings can be difficult to propagate, but you'll have the best chance at success by taking young stems before they have hardened.
Posted By Gremelin Posted on September 4th, 2018 · Updated on September 2nd, 2020
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Coffee Plant · Pictures

Coffee beans - Source: Itikawa


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