As much as some of us like things readily made for consumption, some are inquisitive and want to make things they consume by themselves. Have you ever dreamed of growing and making your coffee right out of your greenhouse? Then, this article is for you.
If you can truly grow a coffee in a greenhouse by yourself, this article will focus on the things needed to ensure successful growth and making your coffee in a greenhouse.
Can Coffee Plants Grow in a Greenhouse?
Deciding to grow coffee in a greenhouse for your consumption or others is not an impossible mission if you are determined. Growing coffee in a greenhouse can be both rewarding and challenging. The reward is the fulfillment of an explorer. While the challenge is hinged on the fact that coffee grows best in strict environmental conditions and its plants will not produce well, possibly not at all, unless the proper measures are abided by strictly.
As coffee naturally grows in a wet and humid climate, if you create a similar environment in a greenhouse, you can successfully grow it.
Coffee plants like to be in the shade, preferably with a temperature within a range of 60 and 70 °F with high humidity. It needs diffuse light, and it doesn’t like winds at all.
Factors to Consider for a Greenhouse Production
Before embarking on a greenhouse coffee production, certain factors must be under consideration. They are;
When considering your greenhouse production, choosing the proper type of coffee is necessary. There are two major types of coffee. Using Robusta (Coffea canephora) will result in poor flavour, higher content of caffeine and would also not give a high-quality beverage. Your best bet will be Coffee Arabica which is used to produce the majority of the world’s coffee.
The essence of an ideal soil and nutrient conditions needed to increase plant health and plant yield cannot be underemphasized. The soil chosen to plant your coffee should be loamy and well-drained. Also, the pH of the soil is expected to be balanced. Coffee plants don’t like very high and very low pH, so a neutral (pH 7) is a perfect option. That is why you can use a regular potting mix.
Young plants require high-level phosphorus but are balanced by about the second or third year of growth. Once strong plants are developed, applications of 10-5-20 fertilizers should be added at a rate of 1500 pounds/acre (or as needed) each year. Fertilizer mixes containing zinc, magnesium, and iron are necessary. Suitable hydroponic solutions can be developed by experienced growers, but commercial mixes are available for amateurs.
As you may or may not know, coffee grows in strict environmental conditions. Until these conditions are fulfilled, coffee plants will not grow properly or not grow at all. Temperatures should be between 60 and 70 degrees F with high humidity. Mist and cloud-like conditions are helpful. It is very beneficial to provide plants with adequate but diffuse light. Moderate airflow is recommended to keep plants cool and relatively dry. Rainfall (watering) should be an even 6″ per month, with a peak wet season. Drier conditions are needed for ripening and harvest.
How to Grow Coffee in a Greenhouse
Before you begin growing your coffee plant, you need to dedicate a space to it. Coffee plants can be grown indoors and outdoors, so you have options whether you live in a small apartment or have a sprawling backyard. Coffee plants are best comfortable in tropical, really humid climates. So, you have to mimic these conditions and make your greenhouse into a makeshift jungle that will provide lots of moisture, heat, and humidity. Although direct sunlight is not needed, the filtered sun is still required. So, you can plant it in a greenhouse under other
trees like oranges. That way, the late afternoon sun will shade because of the tree.
The steps to follow include ;
Getting the Right Bean
To start your successful coffee growth journey, you need a fresh, living, green bean. You cannot just grab an already roasted coffee and think it will work; those beans are already dead.
Soak the seeds
After getting the right seed, the next thing you have to do is plant them early as soon as you get them because they have a limited germination window.
Cover the seeds entirely in water and leave them to soak for 24 hours. That will kickstart the germination process, making the seeds much more likely to take root.
Sow the seeds
For this, get your regular potting mix to have pH-neutral soil. Push the seeds about an inch and a half into the soil and then cover with loose potting mix.
Generously soak with water immediately after planting, preferably with a mist attachment to avoid drowning the seeds. If the soil is soaked with excess water on top, you have already overdone it.
Provide a fertilizer treatment immediately after planting and then at least monthly afterwards. At that stage, the plants would need surplus nutrients to build out their root system. Ensure to keep it fertilized and damp till you start seeing your sprouts. Any plant fertilizer would be just fine for this purpose.
Once your sprouts are visible to about 2-3 feet, you should prune them to further create a bush structure. Snip off the tips of the branches to encourage lateral branching, which will
push the plant out instead of up.
Once your coffee tree starts to live, repot as the plants get bigger(if they are planted in pots), be consistent with pruning, and hydrate with warm water.
FAQs about Growing Coffee in a Greenhouse
How Much Coffee Do You Get From One Plant?
Each tree can produce between 1 and 12 pounds of coffee a year, depending on soil, climate and many other factors.
How Many Years Does It Take for a Coffee Tree to Grow?
Depending on the variety, it will take approximately 3 to 4 years for the newly planted coffee trees to finally bear fruit.
How Long Does It Take to Grow Coffee Indoors?
When a coffee plant is grown in ideal conditions indoors, it will eventually flower when it matures, in about three to five years.
Can You Grow Cocoa in a Greenhouse?
The answer to this is a straight yes! Cocoa plants will have the best chance if cultivated in a temperature-controlled, higher humidity greenhouse.
Although these plants are not native to North
In America, growing a coffee plant in a greenhouse is possible if you provide it with the consistent nurturing it needs. Do not be in haste, rather fall in love with the growth of your coffee and nurture it properly.