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Maizefarmer

Coffee

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There are many people growing coffee on a semi commercial basis in the north. A lot of the coffee comes from small producers that combine their product and funnel it to one of the major buyers, The Royal Project, Starbucks, Hillkoff, some missionary groups and others. Some coffee is grown in larger plantations and some is grown in the wild in various areas and collected by the hill tribe people. I have seen coffee, aribica in particular, grown everywhere from the high hills to a large plantation that was eventually overgrown with Macadamias north of Chiang Rai to a big bush that is growning in front of the Hillkoff shop in Chotana.

There is a good agriculture library at the CM University off of Suthep Road. There you will find everything to answer all of your questions.

Do they have on-line access?

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JungleBiker, I know I would appreciate a contact and I am sure MF would also. Do you have email addresses for him to contact ?

Hi Nawtilus, Please give me a couple of days to dig them out (I'm in Laos and the contact details are in Thailand).

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Seems like this thread has been dead for a while, but I'd like to put in my 2 pennies...

My Thai husband has grown a test plot of 100 coffee trees near Fang, with this as the third year after planting shoots. The result is quite good.

PESTS

Major pest problems are ants (four varieties - the large red, the small red fire ants, very tiny black and the ones the locals call "lazy ants" which are black). They all raise aphids, causing a black smut on the leaves and reducing yield. Snails are also a problem - they consume the fruit as it ripens. He's working out various methods of control, all of which are "mostly" successful, so that he got a decent crop this year. Still needs some fine-tuning. He's trying to do this pesticide-free.

Any suggestions from anyone about ants?

PROCESSING

He is currently using the wet method for separating and drying, shucking by hand. He's using a very large thai-style mortar and pestle to remove the beans after drying, and polishing the beans (removing the silverskin) on woven bamboo mats (works incredibly well).

ROASTING

I do wok-roasting of the beans by hand Taste is quite good, with two good stopping points available. A light roast shortly into the second crack, and a darker roast during a second big smoke later in the second crack. Most folks prefer the lighter roast, which is more fragrant, but I like the darker roast, which, to me, has more flavor.

LOCATION/TYPE

The trees are at about 1500m, planted under mature litchi trees. All arabica.

Based on the results, he's putting in another 1000 trees come next rainy season.

He'd like to automate the first two steps. I think he wants to stick with his polishing method - I've never seen a method work better than the bamboo mat for removing silverskin). I'm going to stick with wok-roasting for now so we're not interested in commercial roasters. It's a very good way to get "intimate" with the beans as we are learning the characteristics of the plot.

We've seen lots of small-scale coffee equipment in Vietnam, but none of it seems to be easily available here in Thailand.

Does anyone know where to buy small-scale coffee processing equipment in Thailand? (Preferably in Chiang Mai or Chiang Rai.)

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Peekint,

For aphids you can try spraying dish washing detergent solution. Mix the detergent with water about like you would use for dishes....so that it feels slippery and foams just a bit when sprayed. Best is to make a small batch and find what works best for you. Aphids have a waxy coating for skin and the detergent solution dissolves this leading to death. I use this whenever I have a serious outbreak of aphids and it has always worked well for me....I apply it liberally and one application is often adequate....check a couple of days after spraying and maybe you can do a bit of touch up on areas that you missed the first time.

By using the detergent solution you will not be killing the lady bugs which are a natural predator for aphids. I have found that since I use no pesticides I have a thriving lady bug community and they do a pretty good job of keeping the aphids in check on their own. Ocassionally there will be an outbreak of aphids so I use the spray but after a few years it seems that the lady bugs are getting more effective and I spray less and less.

Also, for the ants themselves, I have used a propane tank and burner to burn their nests. This takes some time and I would try the detergent solution first. Mostly I have used the burning strategy for ants that infest a particular plot right at the time I sow seeds and then they haul away the seeds!!....so I use burning as a temporary local strategy and have never tried it large scale....it might be too much work.

Chownah

P.S. I've never seen the large red ants that live in trees tending aphids....these are the ants whose eggs people eat.

Chownah

Edited by chownah

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I think you will find that the residue on the leaves and stalk is sooty mould (mildew) and the age old cure is a spray with white oil (non toxic),Works by putting an oily film over the offending pest ,smothering them,,works on aphid as well.

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I think you will find that the residue on the leaves and stalk is sooty mould (mildew) and the age old cure is a spray with white oil (non toxic),Works by putting an oily film over the offending pest ,smothering them,,works on aphid as well.

What is the white oil you refer to ? And where can i get it.

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There are a few different types of white oil,there is the mineral white oil a derivative crude oil processing and used in the food industry as a protective spray on fruit ,eggs etc ,and the water soluble type put out by garden supply companies like Yates,Chevron,you would have to check your local farm produce store

If you have no luck,dont despair as you can make you own vegetable white oil, I searched up a recipe ,it doesnt contain insecticide but will work on scale,sooty mould and to a degree on aphid, many of the mites breathe through their body so cvering them with an oily substance smothers them.

Canola oil is reputed to be very good in the following recipe, you can add water before spraying but you have to keep it stirred up as separation occurs.

It is easy to make your own white oil from vegetable oil and liquid soap. Prepare the concentrate using the proportions below. Store in a suitable container. Label the container, making sure to include the dilution rate on the label for quick reference.

Ingredients

1/2litre of vegetable oil (any brand)

1/2cup Sunlight dish washing liquid

Dilution

Dilute the above mix by placing 1 tablespoon into a litre of water. Mix well and spray thoroughly over both sides of the foliage and onto the offending pest.

The contents of the stored concentrate will separate over time. Simply ensure that the concentrate is well mixed each time before you attempt to dilute it for use. Spray as often as required.

Use

Oil based sprays are useful in controlling a wide range of insect pests and mites. In most cases the oil covers the body of the insect or mite, causing it to suffocate. Scale, aphids, pimple psyllids, mites and even young grasshoppers can be killed by contact with the oil. In the case of citrus leaf miner, the shiny oil coating on the leaves repels the moth responsible for laying eggs on the new leaves of citrus plants. These eggs quickly hatch into larvae that tunnel between the upper and lower surfaces of the leaves causing the characteristic silvery trails and distortion of the leaves.

Precautions

Always following the directions as to the dilution rate as oil based sprays can burn if applied in strong concentrations. Do not apply in hot weather. Do not use on plants with hairy leaves, ferns or palms and reduce to half strength on native plants with fine foliage (eg leptospermums or tea trees). These precautions apply to home made preparations as well as commercially available oil sprays. Commercially available preparations are generally petroleum-based products and their use is not permitted under organic certification.

If you have no luck,dont despair as you can make you own vegetable white oil, I searched up a recipe ,it doesnt contain insecticide but will work on scale,sooty mould and to a degree on aphid, many of the mites breathe through their body so cvering them with an oily substance smothers them.

Canola oil is reputed to be very good in the following recipe, you can add water before spraying but you have to keep it stirred up as separation occurs.

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Thank you. I have used the soap before but we had to redo it every time we turned the water sprinklers on.

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Thank you. I have used the soap before but we had to redo it every time we turned the water sprinklers on.

The soap is only to spread the surface tension of the oil.

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Thank you. I have used the soap before but we had to redo it every time we turned the water sprinklers on.

The soap is only to spread the surface tension of the oil.

Which means it will wash off easily,it does not take long to smother the pests,if you have an oil based substance that stays on the leaves to long ,it can have a detrimental effect on your plants as they cant perform photosynthesis with oil blocked pores on their leaves.

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When we bought this land where we built the house, about 5 rai. We had a few coffee trees, the wife's brother in law cpmplained about exery year the price was dropping. We cleared our trees out. That was 4 years back, one thing I did learn though. Coffee is self pollinating, but if bees pollinate the flowers your yield can increase by 4x.

Edited by Mosha

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Commercially available preparations are generally petroleum-based products and their use is not permitted under organic certification.

I want to point out that using dish washing detergent as I recommend would not be allowed under organic certification either as it is petroleum based....although perhaps a natural soap product would be allowed but I don't know. I suppose that the vegetable oil-detergent mix would not be allowed either....but maybe soap as the surfactant would be allowed...again I don't know....those concerned with this should check with the regulations for the jurisdiction where they are farming.

Chownah

Edited by chownah

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When I used to stay in the Namsom area on the back road to Loei I saw several small coffee plantations locally, some were on the hillsides but a few were on slopes.Most are now gone as they couldn't get a good return.I looked over one site and it appeared to me that they only had very basic information.I have seen coffee before in the Blue mountains of Jamaica.Every body is growing rubber now.

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Seems like this thread has been dead for a while, but I'd like to put in my 2 pennies...

My Thai husband has grown a test plot of 100 coffee trees near Fang, with this as the third year after planting shoots. The result is quite good.

PESTS

Major pest problems are ants (four varieties - the large red, the small red fire ants, very tiny black and the ones the locals call "lazy ants" which are black). They all raise aphids, causing a black smut on the leaves and reducing yield. Snails are also a problem - they consume the fruit as it ripens. He's working out various methods of control, all of which are "mostly" successful, so that he got a decent crop this year. Still needs some fine-tuning. He's trying to do this pesticide-free.

Any suggestions from anyone about ants?

PROCESSING

He is currently using the wet method for separating and drying, shucking by hand. He's using a very large thai-style mortar and pestle to remove the beans after drying, and polishing the beans (removing the silverskin) on woven bamboo mats (works incredibly well).

ROASTING

I do wok-roasting of the beans by hand Taste is quite good, with two good stopping points available. A light roast shortly into the second crack, and a darker roast during a second big smoke later in the second crack. Most folks prefer the lighter roast, which is more fragrant, but I like the darker roast, which, to me, has more flavor.

LOCATION/TYPE

The trees are at about 1500m, planted under mature litchi trees. All arabica.

Based on the results, he's putting in another 1000 trees come next rainy season.

He'd like to automate the first two steps. I think he wants to stick with his polishing method - I've never seen a method work better than the bamboo mat for removing silverskin). I'm going to stick with wok-roasting for now so we're not interested in commercial roasters. It's a very good way to get "intimate" with the beans as we are learning the characteristics of the plot.

We've seen lots of small-scale coffee equipment in Vietnam, but none of it seems to be easily available here in Thailand.

Does anyone know where to buy small-scale coffee processing equipment in Thailand? (Preferably in Chiang Mai or Chiang Rai.)

Hi Peekint,

It seems that this thread was only dormant not dead! You might find this arabica coffee manual useful - it was written by a good friend. It doesn't mention ants but aphids are included in the section on pests. http://www.fao.org/docrep/008/ae939e/ae939e00.htm

JB.

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