Coffee, Tea & Pottery
                                                                                                       
Hawaii, Big Island,Red ripe coffee cherry ready to be picked

 
They call them coffee beans, but they come from berries, so is coffee a vegetable juice or fruit juice?


            
Th
e coffee is a cherry-like fruit that grows on tree, but the coffee you drink in the morning is the seed inside the "fruit"                                                                                                                                                                                               


The Anatomy of a Coffee Cherry                                                                
                         
T
he coffee cherry's outer skin is called the exocarp.  Beneath it is the mesocarp, a thin layer of pulp, followed by a slimy layer called the parenchyma. 


The beans themselves are covered in a parchment-like envelope named the endocarp, more commonly referred to as 'the parchment.'  Inside the parchment, side-by-side lie two beans, each covered separately by yet another layer of thin membrane.  The biological name for this membrane or seed skin is the spermoderm, but it is generally referred to in the coffee trade as the 'silver skin.'


Everyone recognizes a roasted coffee bean but unless you have lived or traveled in a coffee growing country, you might not recognize an actual coffee tree.  

Pruned short in cultivation, but capable of growing more than 30 feet high, a coffee tree is covered with dark-green, waxy leaves growing opposite each other in pairs. 

Coffee cherries grow along the tree's branches.  It takes nearly a year for a cherry to mature after the flowering of the fragrant, white blossoms. 


Because it grows in a continuous cycle, it is not unusual to see flowers, green fruit and ripe fruit simultaneously on a single tree. The trees can live as long as 20 - 30 years and are capable of growing in a wide range of climates, as long as there is no harsh fluctuation in temperature.  Optimally, they prefer a rich soil and mild temperatures, with frequent rain and shaded sun.
"What's in your cup?"