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Technical Guide To Coffee Cultivation

Technical Guide To Coffee Cultivation

Makintau - Coffee is the most traded plantation commodity. Coffee cultivation centers are in Latin America, Central America, Asia-pacific and Africa. While the largest coffee consumers are in European countries and North America. It is natural that this commodity is very actively traded.

Coffee is an annual plant that can reach a productive life of 20 years. To start a coffee cultivation business, choose the type of coffee plant carefully. Factors that affect the success of coffee cultivation in the type of plant, cultivation techniques, post-harvest handling and marketing of the final product.

Selection of types and varieties

Coffee plants are very many types, can reach thousands. But many are cultivated only four types, namely arabica, robusta, liberika and excelsa. Each of these types has different properties. For more details, please read about the types of cultivated coffee.

Choosing the type of plant for coffee cultivation, must be adjusted to the place or location of the land. The location of the land located at an altitude of more than 800 meters above sea level is suitable for arabika cultivation. While from a height of 400-800 meters can be planted robusta. Low-level coffee cultivation can consider the type of liberika or excelsa.

Aside from the technical side of cultivation, the thing worth considering is the selling price of the final product. Arabica coffee tends to be valued higher than other types. But robusta has the highest productivity, the yield is also high.

Preparation of coffee cultivation seedlings

After deciding on a suitable coffee cultivation, the next step is to find superior seedlings, prepare shade land and trees. Information about superior seeds for coffee cultivation can be asked to the Coffee and Cocoa Center or a trusted seedling store. Meanwhile, shade trees must have been prepared at least 2 years before coffee cultivation is carried out.

For the cultivation of arabica coffee the source of the plant used is variety. Examples are the varieties S 795, USDA 762, Kartika-1 and Kartika-2. As for the cultivation of robusta coffee, the source of the plant used is a clone. For example, clones of BP 42 or BP 358.

The propagation of coffee tree seedlings can be obtained by generative and vegetative techniques. Generative propagation of beans is usually used for the cultivation of arabica coffee, while robusta coffee more often uses vegetative propagation with cuttings. 

Each method of propagation of seedlings has its own advantages and disadvantages. In more detail, please read the previous article about the propagation of coffee seedlings with beans and the propagation of coffee seedlings with cuttings.

Preparation of shade land and trees

Coffee cultivation can be done both at high and low levels, depending on the type. In general, coffee requires loose soil rich in organic matter. To increase fertility give organic fertilizers and soil refiners around the plant area. Arabica will grow well at a soil acidity of 5-6.5 pH, while robusta at an acidity level of 4.5-6.5 pH.

The thing that must be prepared before starting coffee cultivation is to plant shade trees. Use shade trees to regulate the intensity of incoming sunlight. Coffee plants include plants that want the intensity of mataheri light is not full.

The types of shade trees that are often used in coffee cultivation are dadap, lamtoro and sengon. Choose a protective tree that does not require much care and the leaves can be a source of green manure.

Sengon-type protective trees should be planted 4 years before coffee cultivation. While the lamtoro type can be faster, about 2 years before. The necessary measures for caring for a protective tree are leaf pruning and looting.

Planting coffee seedlings

If the land, shade trees and seedlings are ready, the next step is to move the seedlings from the polybag to the planting hole in the garden area. The recommended coffee cultivation planting distance is 2.75×2.75 meters for robusta and 2.5×2.5 meters for arabica. 

This planting distance varies with the height of the land. The higher the land the rarer and the lower the tighter the planting distance.

Make a planting hole with a size of 60x60x60 cm, the manufacture of this hole is carried out 3-6 months before planting. When the planting hole digger separates the upper dug soil and the bottom dug soil. Leave the planting hole open. 

Two months before planting mix 200 grams of sulfur and 200 grams of lime with the soil of the lower dig. Then put it in the planting hole. About 1 month before the seedlings are planted mix 20 kg of compost with the upper dug soil, then put it in the planting hole.

Now coffee seedlings are ready to be planted in planting holes. Previously papas leaves contained in seedlings until there are 1/3 part left to reduce evaporation. Remove the coffee seedlings from the polybag, then dig a little planting hole that has been prepared. 

The depth of the excavation adjusts to the length of the roots. For seedlings that have tunjang roots try to keep the roots of the plant perpendicular. Close the planting hole so that the plant stands firm, if needed give ajir to support the plant so that it does not collapse.

Coffee cultivation care

The necessary steps for the maintenance of coffee cultivation are fertilizing, fertilizing pruning and weeding. Here's the explanation:

a. Peyulaman

After the aunt is planted in the garden area, check the growth of the seedlings at least twice a week. After the seedlings are 1-6 months old check at least once a month. During the examination period, if there is a death on the coffee tree immediately do the extension. Feeding is carried out with the same seedlings. Do more instensive care so that embroidery plants can match the growth of other trees.

b. Fertilizing

Giving fertilizer for coffee cultivation can use organic fertilizers or artificial fertilizers. Organic fertilizers can be obtained from materials around the garden such as forage remnants from protective trees or leftover coffee fruit peeling fruit peels and then made into compost. Fertilizer needs for each plant about 20 kg and given about once every 1-2 years.

How to provide fertilizer by making a fertilizer hole that surrounds the plant. Then put the compost in the fertilizer hole. It can also be mixed artificial fertilizer into compost. For acidic soils with a pH below 4.5 fertilizers are mixed with half a kilogram of lime. Lime harvesting is carried out once every 2-4 years.

To enrich the organic matter of plantation areas can be planted with ground cover plants. Plants that are commonly used as ground cover in coffee cultivation include bunguk (Mucuna munanease) and snapper (Arachis pintol). Ground cover plants serve as protectors and fertilizers, besides that the forage can be used as a source of organic fertilizer.

c. Tree pruning

There are two types of pruning in coffee cultivation, namely single-border pruning and double-bordered pruning. Single-border pruning is more suitable for coffee plants that have many secondary branches such as arabica. Double pruning is more widely applied in the gardening of people who grow robusta. This pruning is more suitable on plantations in low-lying and wet areas.

Based on its purpose, pruning in coffee cultivation is divided into three types, namely:

  • The bending of the formation, aims at forming a plant skeleton such as the shape of the header, plant height and branching type.

  • Production cuts, aimed at pruning unproductive branches or old branches. This is done so that the plant is more focused on growing productive branches. In addition, this pruning is also to remove branches affected by diseases or pests.

  • Rejuvenation pruning, carried out on plants that have experienced a decrease in production, exchange rate yields of 400 kg / ha / year or the form of an irregular header. Pruning is carried out after fertilizing to maintain the availability of nutrients.

d. Weed weeding

Coffee plants should always be clean of weeds, especially when the plants are young. Do weeding every two weeks, and clean the weeds under the title of the coffee tree. If the plant is large enough, weed control that exists outside the title of the coffee plant can take advantage of ground cover plants. Weeding on adult plants is carried out if needed only.

Pests and diseases

Coffee cultivation land affected by pests and diseases will experience a decrease in productivity, quality of coffee quality and even plant death. Some of the pests and diseases that commonly attack coffee planting are as follows:

  • Pests of coffee fruit borer. Attacks both young and old plants. As a result of the attack of the fruit will fall or the development of the fruit is not normal and rot. Control of these pests can be by improving garden sanitation, peeling shade trees, harvesting of affected fruits, and chemical spraying.

  • Leaf rust disease (HV). It usually attacks arabica plants. Symptoms of the attack can be seen from the surface of the leaves that experience yellow patches, the longer it becomes dark yellow. It can be avoided by growing arabica coffee above a height of 1000 meters above sea level. Other control can be done by chemical spraying, choosing superior varieties, and technical cultures.

  • Diseases of nematode attacks. Many are found in robusta coffee plantation centers. This attack can reduce production by up to 78%. Control of this disease can be done by connecting plants with nematode-resistant rootstocks. For more details about pests and diseases in coffee plants please read the article on pest control and coffee diseases.

Harvest and post-harvest

Intensively cultivated plants can already bear fruit at the age of 2.5-3 years for robusta and 3-4 years for arabica. The first crop is usually not too much, the productivity of coffee plants will reach its peak at the age of 7-9 years.

The harvest of coffee cultivation is carried out gradually, the harvest can occur in 4-5 months with a picking time interval every 10-14 days. Post-harvest harvesting and processing will determine the quality of the final product. Next, please read the article on how to harvest coffee fruit and the processing process of coffee beans.

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