We all love a good morning cup of coffee, but did you know that coffee beans come from a plant or coffee tree? While coffee comes from growers in tropical areas, you might be surprised to learn that a coffee plant can also make for a great houseplant. It is a hardy evergreen shrub with glossy, dark green leaves that beautify any space.
- Coffea arabica
- Coffee Tree
What Soil Works Best for Coffee Plants?
Coffee plants prefer to grow in slightly acidic soil with a pH between 6 and 6.5. Therefore, plant your coffee plants in a pot with suitable drainage holes and use good, slightly acidic potting soil. Adding peat moss to your potting mix can help make it more acidic. Also, you can add some coffee grounds to your soil, but make sure you use a soil testing kit to find the right balance.
How Much Sun Does a Coffee Plant Need?
A coffee plant needs a lot of sunlight. They do best with lots of bright but indirect light. Place your potted coffee plant in a bright room that gets a lot of light throughout the day but do not place the plant directly in front of a window or anywhere where it will be in the direct sunlight.
If your plant begins to develop brown spots on the leaves or appears “scorched,” especially around the leaf tips, this might be a sign that it is receiving too much direct sun. Relocate the plant to a less sunny location in your home. You can trim off any brown leaves to encourage new growth and keep your plant looking fresh.
What Temperature Works Best for Coffee Plants?
Coffee plants are native to tropical areas, so they like to stay warm. Keep your coffee plant in a temperature-controlled room that consistently remains above 65 degrees Fahrenheit year-round. Keep them away from cold drafts and cold spots in your home.
Do Coffee Plants Enjoy Humidity?
Whenever possible, keep your coffee plant in an area of your home with higher humidity levels. Keep the soil moist but never let the plant sit in wet soil or excess water.
If your home is dry, keep your plant by a sink or in a bathroom since that tends to have more humidity. Alternatively, you can also add a humidifier to a room with this plant or in a room with a humidifier to raise humidity levels. Finally, you can also place a few pebbles in the soil since that creates a bit of humidity as the water evaporates on them.
How Often Should You Water a Coffee Plant?
Coffee plants need watering frequently and regularly. Expect to water your plant every week. You may have to water your plant more regularly in the spring and summer months during the growing season and less frequently in the winter months.
If a coffee plant does not get enough water, its glossy leaves may begin to droop. But don’t worry! Give your plant some water, and the leaves should perk up again soon. Just be sure to get back on a regular watering schedule afterward and consider adding a humidity tray or humidifier!
Should You Fertilize the Plant?
Fertilizing your coffee plant is unnecessary, but you may wish to add fertilizer to the water every couple of weeks during the spring and summer. Doing so will help keep the dark green leaves looking great and encourage your plant to put out lots of new growth.
What Size Do Coffee Plants Grow to Typically?
Coffee plants like to grow and can be several feet tall. You can prune your coffee plant to keep it at a smaller size. The best time of year to cut back your coffee plant is in the spring, using sharp garden shears.
Most Common Bugs
Coffee plants can sometimes have problems with pests such as mealybugs, aphids, and mites. These pests can hide under the leaves and leave behind white residue or tiny webs. If you encounter a pest problem, gently wash your plant’s leaves with a soap or pesticide mixture.
Most Common Diseases
Coffee plants like humid environments and moist soil, but too much water can be a bad thing! Too much water can cause discoloration, root rot, fungus, leaf drop, leaf rust, and other diseases.
How Often Should You Repot Coffee Plants?
Coffee plants like to grow, so choose a pot with enough space to grow and be prepared to repot it often. Coffee plants need repotting about once per year. The best time of year to repot your coffee plant is in the spring. Carefully move your plant into a one-size larger container and fill the pot with fresh potting soil.
How Do I Get My Coffee Plant to Flower and Seed?
It can take a coffee plant 3–5 years to mature and start putting out flowers, so the chances are that your coffee plant won’t flower right away! But with time and proper care, coffee plants will put out pretty little white flowers that smell sweet and lovely in the springtime.
If the conditions are right and the blooms are pollinated, the flowers might turn into small berries or seeds, sometimes called coffee cherries or fruit. Cherries are more likely to form in higher temperatures between 70- and 80-degrees Fahrenheit and high humidity.
Of course, it is unlikely you’ll be able to harvest your plant to make a nice cup of joe, but the flowers and cherries can be pretty exciting! But be careful because many parts of the coffee plant are toxic to humans and pets.
Conclusion — How to Take Care of a Coffee Plant
It might seem intimidating at first, but taking care of your coffee plant indoors can be easy and fun for gardeners of all skill levels. The large, bright green leaves can brighten any home, even if they never bear coffee beans!