How Long Does It Take a Coffee Plant to Bear Fruit?

If you are a coffee enthusiast, maybe you’ve considered producing your own coffee. Growing a coffee plant isn’t as it seems.

You can easily produce the most amazing coffee right at home.

So how long does it take for them to bear fruit? Coffee plants need 3-5 years to reach maturity. At that point, you can expect them to produce 1-2 pounds of coffee per plant.

Note: If you click some of the links or pictures in this article we may earn a small commission at no additional cost to you.

How Long Does It Take To Bear Fruit When Started Outside?

If you plan to grow your coffee plant outdoors, you should be in an area that stays above 65 degrees on average. The ideal environment for an outdoor coffee plant is slightly moist soil with good drainage and humid conditions.

Good things come to those who wait, and coffee plants are a prime example. If you take care of your plant and ensure it has proper moisture and sunlight, you can expect it to bear fruit in three to five years.

The individual plants can vary, but your coffee plant should be flourishing in that time frame.

How Long Does It Take When Grown Indoors?

Do you live in a temperate growing zone? Since the temperature averages in some areas aren’t conducive to growing a coffee plant outdoors, you can consider growing it like a house plant.

Thankfully, coffee plants require minimal care, and they can grow anywhere between five to eight feet tall. Under the right conditions, it takes no longer for a coffee plant indoors to produce fruit like the ones outside.

How Long Does It Take When Raised in A Greenhouse?

Perhaps you are considering growing a coffee tree in your greenhouse. Many people with greenhouses enjoy the success of growing amazing coffee plants.

Growing these lovely plants in a greenhouse provides the ideal climate for them. Coffee plants need steady warmth, humidity, diffused light, and protection from the wind.

If you decide to use this option, be sure you have enough room for the mature plant’s height. Most coffee plants in a greenhouse will begin flowering in four years.

By the fifth year, there will be bright red berries too.

Is It Faster to Start from Seed or From Seedlings? How Much Time Is Saved?

Growing a coffee plant from seed is a labor of love. It’s best if you plant several of them in individual pots because coffee beans can be finicky.

If you plant about ten coffee plants, only about four of them will survive. Then, it will take about three months for those beans to begin growing into seedlings.

Once a seedling is transplanted, it still takes between four to five years for the coffee plant to mature and produce fruit. If you decide to start with a purchased seedling rather than a seed, you will save yourself three months of waiting to get into the plant’s maturation schedule.

If you want to start from seed we recommend this kit (click to see price on Amazon – kit shown in image below). You can always transplant this to a larger pot later (which you’ll have to do and we’ll give options below.

Grow Your Own Coffee Plant Kit (Pack of 2) Coffea Arabica Nana Complete Coffee Growing Kit, 4" Seedling Pots, Coconut Coir Discs, Coffee Seeds, Plant Markers, Drip Trays and Guide

Does Transplanting Speed Things Up or Slow Them Down?

If you have experience with transplanting flower and veggie seedlings into your garden, you shouldn’t have a problem transplanting a coffee plant seedling.

These starts are ready to transplant in four months when they grow to about three or four inches tall. When you buy coffee seedlings, they typically come in four-inch pots that contain four to six starts of the plant.

It’s recommended that you place your seedling pot in a warm bowl of water overnight, then gently separate each seedling the next day. You have two options for transplanting your seedlings.

The first option is to plant each seedling in its four-inch pot with organic potting soil. The coffee seedling will continue to grow until it reaches about eight inches tall, and once it reaches that height, you should transplant it into a 12-18-inch pot.

Your second option will be to plant it directly in the ground if you live in a subtropical or tropical zone. Transplanting coffee seedlings takes you a little more time, but it doesn’t affect the maturation process.

Should You Just Start in A Full- Sized Container for Maximum Speed?

Perhaps you want to bypass the transplanting work and just plant your seed or seedling in a full-sized container. Although it involves more work, you should do the transplanting process to check for healthy roots.

We recommend using a water tight 1/2 wine barrel that is at least 20 gallons (30 is ideal). That’s more than enough room for a full sized tree. We recommend the one below (click here to see on Amazon).

Note – choose your location wisely. This will be nearly impossible to move once it’s setup. You’ll be growing them for years anyways so choose a permanent spot from the beginning.

MGP Water Tight Half Wine Barrel Planter, 26" X 18" X 26"

What to Expect Each Year of a Coffee Trees Life

Coffee trees go through different stages of life. After the seedlings have matured enough to be planted in the 12-18-inch pots, they will continue to grow up to 36 inches tall within the next twelve months.

Year Two

At this stage, it’s recommended that you use a fertilizer that is rich in nitrogen, so your coffee plant will develop strong roots, stems, and leaves. After another year, the four-foot plants turn two years old, and they should be ready to flower.

Flowering Stage

Since coffee plants are evergreen, they don’t lose their leaves, and they stay a gorgeous, deep green color. The stunning white coffee blooms don’t smell like Java, but they have the intoxicating smell of orange or jasmine flowers.

You’ll enjoy the delightful aroma of your coffee blossoms for a month until they drop off, leaving a small round ball called a carpel. These carpels will develop into coffee berries within six months.

Fruit Stage

When the fruit comes on the tree, it’s in what’s called colorful metamorphosis. After your flowers fade, you notice the stone-hard green carpels.

Toward the fifth month, the green carpels will lighten into a rosy pink and a bright cherry red when they are ready to pick.

How Long Do Coffee Trees Live (Outdoors, Indoors, Or in A Greenhouse)?

When you plant a coffee tree, it will be a green friend for life. A coffee tree can live outdoors, indoors, or in a greenhouse for as long as 100 years with proper care.

How to Increase Coffee Yields Faster?

The best way to increase your coffee yields is to maintain proper moisture and periodic pruning. It would help if you also fertilized your coffee plants with products that are high in nitrogen, potassium, zinc, magnesium, and calcium.

If you want rich, delicious coffee that is fragrant and tastes as it came from Columbia, then consider the cost-effective option of growing it right at home.

We recommend the fruit tree fertilizer shown below (click to see price on Amazon).

Dr. Earth 708P Organic 9 Fruit Tree Fertilizer In Poly Bag, 4-Pound