The Plant: The Coffee Plant has a mass of deep green leaves, small scented white flowers. In ideal growing conditions coffee beans may even be produced, but don’t give up your normal brand!!
Its needs: Coffee needs warmth and humidity, including regular misting of the leaves in hot dry conditions, or in air-conditioned rooms. But it is a cool region plant rather than tropical so will prefer the lower side of living room temperatures. When grown as a houseplant indoors, the plants enjoy semi-shade, but not direct sun. Use an enriched compost potting mix.
If coffee beans are produced it is obviously a point of interest, but usually best to remove them to avoid taking too much nutrition from the plant. Alternatively, ensure regular feeding to allow the coffee beans to develop, but don’t expect a commercial crop indoors! This is up to your own personal preference, and of course always a ‘one-up’ talking point guaranteed to provoke interest, and an invite to a coffee morning.
The Coffee Plant can always be ‘up-sized’ into a larger patio pot and grown outdoors for the summer months. You will then though, have the problem of a much larger pot plant during late summer when you will need to bring it indoors before the cold sets in and certainly before frosts.
If pot grown then it will need regular feeding - certainly each two weeks.
Grow your own coffee with Cofea arabica!
Good for: An obvious talking point rather than a spectacular plant to look at! Nice green leaves, best kept trimmed to shape. Very Fragrant white flowers, which with care, will develop into seeds – aka coffee beans!
When grown indoors under glass or in the living accommodation, it can be subject to a number of sap sucking pests including leaf scale pest, mealy bug, red spider mite. Maybe they get a ‘high’ from the sap!
In their habitat, Coffee Trees grow easily from seed – ie the beans. So much so that in some parts they become invasive! Don’t be tempted to sow coffee beans that have already been roasted. They will not germinate. Best to grind down and drink!