352: Scott Murray on California Grown Coffee.
Improving polyculture growing techniques.
Scott has 44 years of organic agricultural production experience in the United States and Mexico. He has a multitude of experience with conservation, food production, and environmental leadership—including serving as an elected California Conservation official for the last 26 years. Scott also specializes in farmland preservation projects utilizing Smart Growth Principles. He now does farm creation and consulting as his primary work, including work on a farm growing coffee in Southern California.
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In This Podcast:
When one of his farmer clients was seeking answers for their aging avocado farm, Scott Murray encouraged a solution that allowed for polyculture farming of coffee on the coastal side of some Southern California mountains. The micro-climate conditions they were able to create is producing results, and the preventative techniques he employed against weather and furry pests can be replicated on most other farms. There is a lot of information in this podcast, so be prepared to take notes!
Listen in and learn about:
- Converting one of his clients to organic avocados
- Then moving toward a polyculture farm
- Being close to the ocean and having more elevation will allow for coffee
- The task of changing the standard growing techniques in water-challenged California
- The stumping process over time
- An innovative growing technique for old growth avocado trees
- Adding coffee trees to the farm and creating a ‘microchip rainforest’ condition
- Staying organic with the new process
- The symbiotic relationship in the soil that quadruples the effectiveness
- Planting the trees with wire and agriculture fabric as self-insurance against gophers and high winds
- Other techniques and timing that he used to grow the coffee and somethings he has learned
- Learning about coffee and the two main varieties
- A small primer on coffee economics
- The new interest in Californian grown coffee
- How they know the cherries are ready
- What the fruit of a coffee tree is like
- How the increased time of cherry on bean affects the flavor
- The natural evolution of farming
- The first California Coffee Conference
- Genetic mapping of coffee plants
As well as:
- His advice – Look to find your opportunity to grow your own plant or plants. Get involved in where your food is coming food, and the quality of your foods.
Scott’s Book recommendations:
How to reach Scott:
Producer’s Note: You can find Scott’s first interview on Avocado Farming HERE
This episode was sponsored by The Seed Bank Box.Click HERE to support our show and learn more.