Coffea arabica – Coffee
Other Common Name: Kona Coffee, Arabian Coffee, Arabica Coffee
Coffea Arabica is a shrub that is endemic to Ethiopia’s southwestern highlands and Yemen’s mountainous regions. It is known as the coffee shrub of Arabia, mountain coffee, Arabica coffee, Arabian coffee, Kona coffee, or simply, coffee. It is the first coffee species to be grown and is the leading cultivar, as it represents 70% of production globally.
In the wild, this plant grows between 9 to 12 meters or 30 to 39 feet tall. But normally, it grows to only about 4.5 meters or 15 feet tall. The bark is thin and light grayish in color, and it grows upright, spreading out with distinct horizontal and somewhat drooping branches.
The leaves are usually glossy, dark green, and are shaped elliptic-ovate to oblong. They are somewhere between 6 to 12 centimeters or 2.5 to 4.5 inches long, and 4 to 8 centimeters or 1.5 to 3 inches broad.
The white, hermaphroditic flowers are 10 to 15 millimeters in diameter and grow in axillary clusters. They are tubular and normally have 5 lobes. They also have a fragrant and sweet scent.
The fruits that follow the flowers are normally red, but sometimes, they can also be yellow or purple, especially when they mature. They have a soft outer layer that is edible and sweet and contain one or two seeds. The seeds, called coffee beans are encased in a hard outer layer that is removed by milling.
When raw, the seeds are colored brown or pale fawn, but they turn dark brown when roasted. They are used to make coffee and other food and beverages that need coffee flavoring.