Indoor Coffee Growing: Tips for Cultivating Your Own Cup of Joe

Around two decades ago, during a leisurely excursion to Nashville, Tennessee, I stumbled upon a coffee plant within a greenhouse for the very first time.

The sight of this plant left me intrigued and captivated, as I discovered that its red cherries grew in clusters and each cherry held two seeds, which we know as coffee beans.

The fascinating discovery of this plant, which I had only ever seen in a processed form, left me with a newfound appreciation for the journey that coffee takes from its origin to our cups.

This experience granted me a deeper understanding and admiration for the intricacies of the coffee industry and the hard work that goes into growing, harvesting, and roasting the coffee beans.

It was a moment that stayed with me and sparked my curiosity, leading me to explore and learn more about the fascinating world of coffee.

I must admit, I was taken aback when I discovered that coffee can actually be grown indoors. The idea of nurturing a coffee plant within the confines of one’s home seemed both intriguing and improbable.

However, upon delving deeper into the subject, I learned that with the right amount of care and a generous dose of patience, these indoor coffee plants can even produce beans that can be roasted or toasted for brewing.

Of course, one should not expect a bountiful harvest, as the yield is likely to be just enough for a cup or two.

Nevertheless, the allure of cultivating Coffea arabica as a houseplant lies not only in its potential as a source of homegrown coffee, but also in its aesthetic appeal.

With its glossy green leaves, fragrant white flowers, and shrubby habit, this variety of coffee plant exudes a captivating charm that can enhance any indoor space.

When it comes to locating a specific item, particularly in the realm of horticulture, one need not worry about encountering any difficulties when searching for it at larger nurseries or perusing through houseplant catalogs and websites.

These vast and comprehensive sources of information and products are specifically designed to cater to the diverse needs and preferences of gardening enthusiasts, both amateur and professional alike.

With an extensive range of options available, these nurseries, catalogs, and websites serve as invaluable resources for individuals seeking particular plants or simply looking to expand their knowledge and collection of houseplants.

Their wide selection ensures that individuals can find exactly what they are looking for, be it a rare and exotic species or a more common and readily available plant.

Thus, one can rest assured that the task of locating a desired item within the realm of horticulture is made significantly easier by the presence of larger nurseries, houseplant catalogs, and websites.

Coffea trees, known for their production of the beloved coffee beans, are native to regions near the equator where they grow to an impressive height of approximately 25 feet in the wild.

However, when cultivated as potted houseplants, these trees have a more limited growth potential, typically reaching a maximum height of around 6 feet.

Despite their reduced size, many coffee enthusiasts opt to trim their potted Coffea trees to maintain a more manageable stature.

Fortunately, this practice does not negatively impact the health or well-being of these plants. Thus, by carefully tending to these potted Coffea trees, individuals can enjoy the beauty and charm of these plants within the confines of their homes without sacrificing their desired size.


If you are interested in cultivating a plant on your own, it is essential to follow certain guidelines to ensure its successful growth.

Firstly, it is crucial to choose a well-draining potting mix with a pH range between 6.0 and 6.5, preferably one that has been amended with peat moss.

This will provide the plant with the necessary nutrients and ensure proper drainage. Additionally, it is important to maintain the right level of moisture for the plant.

While it should never be allowed to become soggy or completely dry, it should be kept slightly moist. To achieve this, it is recommended to water the plant thoroughly once every week or two, allowing the soil to dry out halfway before watering again.

Furthermore, the plant should be placed in a warm environment, ideally with temperatures ranging from 70 to 80 degrees Fahrenheit.

It is crucial to avoid exposing the plant to drafts, as they can be detrimental to its growth. Instead, find a suitable location away from any drafts, preferably in a spot that receives bright, indirect light.

Placing the plant off to the side of a sunny window can provide the ideal lighting conditions.

In addition to proper watering and light, it is important to provide ample humidity for the plant.

This can be achieved through various methods, such as misting the plant daily, running a humidifier nearby, or placing the pot on a shallow tray filled with pebbles and water.

As the water evaporates, it creates a humid microclimate around the plant, which is beneficial for its growth.

By following these guidelines and providing the necessary care, you can successfully grow your own plant. Remember to monitor its progress regularly and make any adjustments needed to ensure its optimal growth and development.

In order to ensure the optimal growth and health of your plant, it is recommended to feed it four times a year with a balanced fertilizer, adhering to the instructions provided on the package.

This regular fertilization will provide the plant with the necessary nutrients it requires to thrive and flourish.

By following the recommended feeding schedule, you can ensure that your plant receives a consistent supply of essential elements, promoting strong root development, vibrant foliage, and robust flowering.

Additionally, if you desire to prune your plant, it is best to do so during the spring season. Pruning during this time allows for the removal of any dead or damaged branches, stimulating new growth and maintaining an attractive shape.

By incorporating these practices into your plant care routine, you can enjoy the beauty and vitality of your plant for years to come.


In the realm of cultivating coffee plants, it is imperative to note that the commencement of blooming typically occurs when the plant reaches the age of three to five years.

In order to obtain the coveted beans, a meticulous process of hand-pollination becomes necessary, involving the utilization of either a cotton swab or a diminutive artist’s paintbrush to delicately transfer pollen from one blossom to another.

Should this procedure be executed with precision, the flowers will eventually yield cherries.

Once the cherries have reached a state of ripeness, characterized by a complete transformation into a vibrant shade of red, it is time to embark upon the next phase of the coffee cultivation journey.

These ripe cherries must be carefully harvested and subsequently laid out in a solitary layer, ensuring that they are subjected to a daily tossing to avert the undesirable occurrence of rotting at their base.

Following a duration of approximately one to two weeks, the dried cherries necessitate the removal of their desiccated and leather-like exterior, thereby unveiling the treasured beans concealed within.

Now that the beans have been liberated from their protective casings, it is time to embark upon the final stages of the coffee preparation process.

The beans, having undergone the aforementioned transformation, ought to be subjected to a dry-roasting procedure, typically facilitated by a hot wok or frying pan.

During this pivotal stage, it is crucial to maintain a constant stirring motion until the beans have attained a desirable shade of brown.

Subsequently, it is essential to allow the roasted beans to cool before embarking upon the grinding process, which ultimately culminates in the creation of a tantalizing and aromatic cup of homegrown Joe, ready to be savored and enjoyed at one’s leisure.