The coffee plant is the latest trendy houseplant that’s got everyone buzzing, and not just because it’s a source of caffeine! With its glossy green leaves and bright red seed pods, this attractive houseplant is a welcome addition to your indoor collection, and the roastable beans it produces are certainly a nice bonus! If you tend to be a bit of a coffee snob and love trying fancy new blends, learn how to grow your own at home with this simple guide!
How to Grow Coffea Arabica: Basic Care
You might assume that because this evergreen houseplant hails from Africa, that it would like plenty of bright, hot sunlight, but it actually does much better in indirect sunlight. This means that instead of placing it directly on a sunny windowsill, you should place it a few feet away on a shelf or table so it still gets some light, but won’t end up getting sun damage. You don’t want it to get roasted before it even starts producing beans! It does, however, prefer hot temperatures to cool ones, so try not to expose it to any cool air drafts or temperatures under 65°F.
Frequent watering in well-draining soil is a must. Definitely opt for a container with drainage holes so you don’t end up with a pot full of stagnant water, which will ultimately lead to root rot. These houseplants also appreciate some humidity, so if it’s a bit dry inside your home, you can either mist the plant regularly or place it on top of a tray full of pebbles and water. During the winter, you can scale back on watering a bit and let the soil dry out for short periods of time.
Coffee Plants Fertilizer
Lightly apply a balanced 10-10-10 fertilizer three times per year: once in April, once in June, and one last time in August. This will help speed up growth and strengthen the stems during its active growing season, so it’ll get nice and tall. Don’t give it any fertilizer during fall or winter, as it requires a dormancy phase where it can rest and recharge before its next growth spurt.
Keep in mind; this houseplant can reach up to 6 feet tall at maturity, so you’ll want to give it adequate space and a nice big container so it doesn’t get too cramped. Every spring, take some pruning shears or snips and remove any damaged growth or spindly limbs, to make room for new, healthy growth and a stronger plant overall.
How Long Does it Take a Coffee Plant to Bear Fruit?
Truthfully, it may take a few years for this houseplant to start producing the flowers that eventually bear fruit, but we think this labor of love is certainly worth it! Pollinating the flowers by hand with a little paintbrush will help move things along, and once the fruits ripen to red, you can pick them off to retrieve the beans inside and prepare them for roasting.
While one plant may not produce enough to fill up your coffeemaker, you’ll probably have enough to fill up a single-serving V60 dripper or some other small brewing apparatus. We guarantee you’ll savor that homegrown cup of joe like nothing you’ve ever had from Starbucks!
Eager to learn how to grow coffee at home to enjoy for ornamental and edible purposes? We have so many new houseplants available that you can cultivate into huge, flowering trees. You’ll love the way the glossy leaves glint in the light! Visit Living Color Garden Center to see our whole collection, and feel free to call us to arrange for curbside pickup or home delivery if needed.