How to: Growing Coffee Beans
Growing coffee beans at the comfort of your own home, on your very own coffee tree, is a fulfilling experience. This can help you to appreciate and learn the entire process in producing coffee from your very own coffee tree. Aside from that, it can help you enjoy a fresh cup of coffee made from your own home grown green coffee beans.
This may help you save some money that you would otherwise spend on coffee at the store, so you may spend your hard earned cash on something else.
Relatively, growing coffee beans is easy. However, you have to be patient in taking care of the coffee tree so it will eventually yield a decent quality green coffee bean harvest that you may use or sell.
Growing coffee beans can be fun!
There are various methods of growing coffee beans. One of these is starting off with good quality coffee cherries. This may pose a problem if your country does not produce native coffee cherries.
In this case, you can look for the green coffee beans, otherwise known as coffee seeds, in stores that have them. Some distributors import them from other countries so you do not have to fret too much.
When picking out the coffee cherries, you should ask for the green coffee beans that have been recently harvested.
Selecting coffee cherries or coffee beans that have been stocked for long a period of time will have a low chance of survival and will not get to the stage of growing coffee beans, as far as the pre-germination and germination processes are concerned. Aside from that, old coffee beans will need as long as six months for the germination process.
Working with Coffee Cherries
It is also wise to select whole coffee cherries for planting. This is because you are highly assured that these coffee cherries have not undergone various processing methods. This will mean that they have not been subjected to undesired conditions such as high temperatures and low humidity, which is optimal in the future for growing coffee beans.
Before you subject the green coffee beans to the pre-germination process, you must pulp the cherries using your bare hands and wash them under running water. Usually, it is difficult to remove the pulp manually.
To further aid in the removal of the pulp, you have to ferment the coffee cherries until the pulp completely falls off the seed. To determine if the seeds have been through enough fermentation, you have to firmly rub the green coffee beans using your hand. However, you should not apply excessive amounts of force, to avoid damaging them.
After this, wash the green coffee beans again under running water.
Are your coffee seeds viable for growing coffee beans?
To check if the seeds of the coffee cherries are viable for planting and eventually growing coffee beans, immerse them in water. For this step, it is important to observe if the seeds are floating or sinking.
Remove the seeds that are floating and keep the ones that sink in water. Basically speaking, the green coffee beans that float in water do not have enough contents in them to help them thrive and probably wont end up growing coffee beans, if they even survive long enough to develop.
Conversely, those green coffee beans that sunk in the water have enough contents to aid in the growth of an embryo. These seeds have a high probability of surviving the germination period and potentially growing coffee beans.
However, this test does not guarantee that all of the seeds of the coffee cherries that sunk in water will survive the pre-germination and germination processes. Roughly, around two green coffee beans out of a hundred survive these two preparatory processes. These coffee trees move on to grow false leaves, true leaves, and yield another batch of coffee cherries, where it then finally begins growing coffee beans.
Pre-germination of Coffee Seeds
The pre-germination process will simply require you to soak the green coffee beans in water. Ideally, the seeds should be soaked for around 12 to 24 hours to allow the seeds to form the embryo.
You will see evidence of the embryos upon closer inspection of the green coffee beans . The embryo appears as little white bumps at the end of the seeds.
After the washing process and elimination process of the cherry pulp, the green coffee beans should be left to air dry. However, you should not allow them to dry up completely because this can cause harm to the coffee embryo. Also, it is important to avoid letting them dry under direct sunlight.
Prior to planting of the coffee seeds, it is important to prepare a good type of soil and a large pot to hold the coffee beans. You should skip the use of small pots because the seeds tend to set their roots deep during the germination process. Therefore, if you use small pots, you will simply hamper the growth process and eventually suffocate the sprouts of the coffee tree.
For the soil type, it is good to use a combination of highly fertilized and loose soil. The highly fertilized soil will aid in the adequate nourishment of the coffee tree and well aid in growing coffee beans of higher qualities. On the other hand, the loose soil will provide enough space for the coffee trees to thrive and dig their roots deeper. Usually, the experts prepare these soil types in layers. Vermiculite is also a good choice for the coffee tree.
During the entire germination process, you should regularly water the coffee tree to aid in keeping the amount of soil moisture intact. However, you should also keep in mind to strike a good balance between keeping the soil moist and providing an adequate period for water drainage. Ideally, the experts advise that you should water the coffee tree twice a day — in the morning and evening.
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Category: Grow Coffee