COFFEE

( Coffea arabica )  All coffee plants are classified in the large family Rubiaceae. They are evergreen shrubs or trees that outdoors may grow 12 ft tall when unpruned. The leaves are dark green and glossy, usually 4–6 in long and 2.5 in wide, simple, entire, and opposite.  The flowers are axillary, and clusters of fragrant white flowers bloom simultaneously.  The flowers are followed by oval berries of about .6in. When immature they are green, and they ripen to yellow, then crimson, before turning black on drying. Each berry usually contains two seeds, but 5–10%  have only one; these are called peaberries. Arabica berries ripen in six to eight months, The coffee "bean" is the seed of this fruit.

Coffea arabica is self-pollinating, and as a result the seedlings are generally uniform and vary little from their parents. Indoors they usually get 3'-4' high but can be pruned to any size. They like filtered sunlight and do well in an east facing window when kept inside. If put out for the summer, keep from hot afternoon sun and bring inside when temperature falls below 40f. Any good potting mix kept slightly acidic will work for container plants and they are easy to grow.