Thursday, February 15, 2007

Coffee Harvest

Owning an organic coffee and fruit farm in El Empalme, San Ramon, Costa Rica is just about the last thing I ever would have imagined.

This week was our first coffee harvest. The reality of the opportunity and responsibility that comes with owning a coffee farm blew our minds. We have the privilege to nurture the farm and help the community.

Don Alejandro and his family appeared out of nowhere and asked if they could pick our coffee and work on the farm. They are a poor Nicaraguan family looking for an opportunity. It’s just the beginning but using the resources of the farm to help our neighbors should be quite a trip.

We have a few hundred pounds of coffee beans that we brought to my friend Martin Rodriguez to dry, process and roast. In about 2 months OUR first organic coffee harvest will be ready to drink.

The day following coffee harvest, Don Alejandro said for the health of our 6 lemon trees, he wanted to bring in the limons. I was shocked and pleased to see 600 limons in a half a day. In 15 days, our trees should produce their next crop. We’re fantasizing about our future organic lemonade stand and how to use our mountain (literally) of fruit. Besides our lemons, our coffee farm produces manos (hands) of banana, plantano and cuadrada, guavas, guayabas, oranges and sweet lemons, water apples, mangos and pitaaya. This is the true meaning of shade-grown coffee plants, a rich eco-system of fruit shading the coffee and feeding the many birds and animals.

Our friend Christopher studied agriculture for 6 years and will coordinate the projects.

Our neighbors in El Empalme have welcomed us and the possibilities are endless. Poco a poco.... The incredible sunsets into the Pacific Ocean make this a truly magical place. I can’t really think of too many places in the world that compare to our farm in El Empalme.