Has anyone grown a coffee tree?

cynandjon(Z 5/6)March 11, 2011


Im curious has anyone tried growing a coffee tree? Has it ever produced beans? I would love to try growing one but I wondered how hard they are to grow.



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They can be a bit of a challenge in a northern climate and as an indoor plant. They like only filtered sun (excessive sun will cause burning). They like moderate temps (not to warm/too cold). Also, they need high humidity. They are somewhat prone to mealy bugs indoors. I currently have one but have lost dozens more and never have had one reach a more mature state before dieing. But maybe you'll have better luck!

    Bookmark   March 12, 2011 at 7:46AM
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Cin...I agree with NJ, Coffee Trees are a bit of a challenge in northern climates or as indoor plants, but with effort, proper light, watering, soil, fertilizer and Patience, you could get lucky.

I think Coffee's are harder to adapt when youngsters, but buying an expensive adult tree, only to lose it, would be a waste.
I've killed a handful over the years, until I decided to give it one more try. Found a 4" potted Coffee at our local grocery store, 8-10 yrs-ago, for 1.00.

Here's a pic.

NJ is so right about placing a Coffee tree in harsh summer sun. I made this mistake last summer, ended up clipping many sunburnt leaves.

So far, my Coffee never flowered or berried. An author who writes plant books, joked yet was serious how you'd get one cup of coffee from all the beans off one standard Coffee Tree. lol.

There's different coffee types, but the only mostly sold is Arabica. Give it a try, Toni

    Bookmark   March 12, 2011 at 11:08PM
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cynandjon(Z 5/6)

Thanks for responding. I knew I posted something but I had to go through all my posts to find it.
Someone on a chat room I go to said she has one and she lives in Alaska. She says hers is 20 years old, Ill have to ask her if she uses a humidfier.
I have both boston ferns and palms and they both do fine in my house so maybe I would be lucky. LOL

sorry you lost yours did you try using a humidfier? I wonder if it would make a difference?

I considered growing from a green seed but I never had much luck with that with plants. I'll try to find a smaller one to try my luck. Your coffee tree is gorgeous. I dont really care much about getting coffee from it, I just thought it would be fun to have one.

    Bookmark   March 15, 2011 at 7:39PM
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Beautiful Coffee tree Toni!
I've killed one & that was enough for me... it didn't even last all that long!

    Bookmark   March 16, 2011 at 11:20PM
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Cyn. What do you mean you tried growing from a 'green' seed? If you're talking about a coffee bean, they have to be red, ripe..Second they won't germinate once roasted. You'd need fresh seed to get it to germinate.

I agree buying a small Coffee plant is your best bet. Grocery stores that sell plants usually have 4" potted Coffee plants. Mine was bought from Jewel's, our grocery store. Think it cost 1.29.
A tall tree would cost a fortune. If you can't find one locally, try Ebay. Other online nurseries sell small coffee plants, too.

Gravyboots, thanks..if you like Coffee Trees, don't give up. Start with a young plant..Toni

    Bookmark   March 17, 2011 at 3:16PM
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Oh, I still have one. It's in a western, exposure in the kitchen (right over the sink, so it is humid), but it still has mealy bugs. It won.t be long till I put it out--still they are not easy plants. Even in the tropics, they require special protection from the sun. I keep on trying though. Best to just buy that highland farm in Kenya to grow them though!

    Bookmark   March 18, 2011 at 9:25PM
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NJ, lol..Too funny.

Is there a hose connected to your kitchen sink? If so, perhaps you should shower the leaves daily, if possible. Add a couple drops of dish soap, rub those suckers off. Rinse soap. As long as the soil doesn't get wet, you can spray everyday.

Are you using insecticide? Or swiping w/Rubbing Alcohol?

For some reason many people are complaining about Mealy this year..Wonder if these disgusting insects are being transported along with plants. Something's up.
I hope you rid them..Toni

    Bookmark   March 18, 2011 at 11:14PM
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puglvr1(9b central FL)

That's a very NICE coffee plant Toni...Great job especially growing it in your climate...

I had one a few years ago...long story short I accidentally left it outside during a freeze. It was 25 degrees that night! Needless to say...I lost it. I even got that plant to bloom and grow beans...so sad I lost it.

    Bookmark   March 19, 2011 at 7:53PM
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cynandjon(Z 5/6)

I said I considered growing one from a seed. I must have misread the info when I researched it. I thought it said the seeds had to be green. My mistake.

    Bookmark   March 20, 2011 at 4:44PM
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Pug, what a beauty!!! I'd have cried losing that gorgeous tree. Looks heavy..
I didn't realize Coffee was so cold-sensitive. One night at 25F, it died?
How long did it take to get that size? Potted Coffee trees are slow-growing, at least here in IL.

Cyn..no problem. If you look at Pug's pictures, 'above' in the first pic the berries are green. As they age/ripen, they've reddened. Once deep red, seeds are ready for sowing. Toni

    Bookmark   March 20, 2011 at 5:10PM
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puglvr1(9b central FL)

Thanks Toni!! Yes, I was heartbroken when I lost it. It actually took several days after the freeze to slowly die. I was hoping the roots survived and severely pruned all the dead leaves and branches...but the roots died shortly after.

I bought that plant from WM in a 4" pot...it took about 2 1/2 yrs. to get that size. I've been looking for another one and I haven't found yet.

    Bookmark   March 20, 2011 at 8:42PM
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I have a potted coffee tree on my back porch and it is getting direct sunlight all summer long. Coffee trees start growing coffee beans after about the 5th year of growing. I live in the South and it is very hot and humid here (summer temps can reach 95F +). Except for watering it and putting it in its final big pot, I have never done anything else to it. In the winter, it is in my unheated sunroom, which gets quite cold (around 40F). My tree now is in its 5th year and, as promised, the tiny white flowers (blooms) are turning into green berries which, hopefully, will turn into coffee beans. I never had problems with any bugs. I do not use fertilizer on the tree, but mixed my own compost with regular potting soil when I put the tree in its final pot this spring. I'd like to post a pic with my message, but don't know how to do it. E-mail me for a pic !

    Bookmark   July 8, 2011 at 11:12AM
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Yannis, do you know what variety your coffee tree is? Obviously it likes what you are doing to it!

Referring to the green coffee - I believe the poster meant "raw" green beans plucked out of the ripe cherry.

I found the Seedman has several varieties of coffee sold as seeds and I have considered purchasing some, including a couple that get between 2 to 3 feet high. They're not that expensive so it's not an expensive plant to lose if something happened to it.

I think putting the plant on a deep tray filled with pebbles and water would help with the humidity problems?

    Bookmark   January 17, 2012 at 8:57PM
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Robusta coffee is easier to grow indoors than aribica. It matures faster and it has the added advantage of being the source for green coffee bean supplements which you will have growing fresh in your window!

    Bookmark   April 8, 2013 at 10:35PM
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I haven't, but I found Mr. S's articles very informative. If you search the site for Coffea arabica, there are plant event updates, as well (regarding blooming, fruiting, germinating, sprouting, etc.).


    Bookmark   April 9, 2013 at 12:43AM
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Does anyone know of an online source for live coffee plants that is NOT the arabica species? I can find many sources of seed but no live plants. I'm looking for a robusta species plant. I've had no luck sprouting seed. I have tree that was given to and I have to say it is the easiest care houseplant I have, you just don't want to let the soil dry out.

    Bookmark   February 18, 2014 at 1:50PM
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Looking at the advice on PlantsAretheStrangestPeople about how coffee transpires heavily in the summer, I am wondering if this plant might do better in a hydroculture setup than in dirt.
"Semi hydro" (growing in clay pellets with a water resevoir to wick up water to the roots) seems to work well for plants that are very thirsty, though I have not yet attempted it with a coffee plant.
(I don't even drink coffee :) )

    Bookmark   February 19, 2014 at 8:49AM
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Treebird.. A seller on Ebay, sgabird, has various Coffee Trees.
He has a type I'm interested in purchasing, but it's too cold to ship, although he also sells heat packs.
The coffee is called, Psychotria Nervosa.
I don't know the size, but I've bought plants from him in the past..so far so good.

Summer Sunshine...'I don't even drink coffee.' LOL
Neither do I, but the coffee trees are pretty. Toni

    Bookmark   February 19, 2014 at 12:28PM
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I checked out the seller you mentioned on ebay but the only other coffee variety they offer besides arabica is the Psychotria Nervosa you had mentioned. I still cant find any other species of coffee except arabica. I turn up empty on all my web searches.

    Bookmark   February 21, 2014 at 2:15AM
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I know a man here in North Norway who had (or still has?) a coffee tree, he even got fruits on it, and roasted his own coffee! He kept it indoors, of course. Exclusive coffee, one might say... :D

    Bookmark   February 21, 2014 at 9:08AM
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Wow, these are normally grown in Columbia or there-abouts, right? I guess if you are zone 8 or above, a greenhouse that is tall, could accomidate some coffee plants, right?

    Bookmark   February 23, 2014 at 11:37PM
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I'm in zone 5 Iowa. I grow my coffee tree indoors year round. In my experience it is a very simple thing to grow, low maintenance. I've heard others say the opposite but mine grows quite vigorous. The only thing I notice is that the soil has to stay moist and not dry out. It actually doesn't seem to mind growing in front of a window with normal room humidity. I got a small seedling from a lady at work about a year ago and it stays very healthy with frequent watering and an occasional fertilizer spike.

    Bookmark   February 24, 2014 at 1:33AM
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I am in Mexico city and a bird gave me a present, a coffee plant, it started growing without me knowing it, next thing a see is a beautiful plant small but with very shinny dark leaves, I decided to leave it since it was so beautiful, next thing my gardner said it was a coffee plant, it is now about a year and a little more and I keep it in a pot in my sun roof. It is a beautiful bush, it is not a tree and has started to fill out with little white flowers. I do not know what type of coffee it is but I guess I will find out once I can harvest the coffee beans. Does anyone know how to do it and when to cut them out. Pls advice.


    Bookmark   February 26, 2015 at 10:53AM
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