Tropical Ecology and Conservation [Monteverde Institute]


Julia Crown



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Publication Date

September 2000


Coffee (Coffea arabica, Rubiaceae) is an important economic crop for many small farmers in Monteverde, Costa Rica. The humid, cool and dark conditions near the forest as compared to the middle of a plantation provide an optimal habitat for fungal growth. In each of three different farms in Cañitas, three transects were set from the forest edge into the plantations. The amount of fungus on the coffee leaves was measured at varying distances away from the forests. A significant increase in the percent of fungus on the leaves between zero meters and five meters into the plantations was found (3-way ANOVA; p < 0.0001). These results suggest that farmers may find it more economically efficient to create a 10m buffer zone of non-host crops to reduce the impact of the forest microclimate in that area.


El café es un cultivo muy importante para la economía de muchos pequeños caficultores en Monteverde. Las condiciones húmedas, frescas y protección contra el sol cerca del bosque, en comparación con el cafetal, proveen un hábitat óptimo para los hongos. Se hicieron tres transectos de 40 metros en tres fincas en Cañitas. Se midió la cantidad de hongos en las hojas a cinco distancias del bosque. Había un aumento significativo en el porcentaje de hongos sobre las hojas entre solamente 0m y 5m en el cafetal. Los caficultores, tal vez, deberían crear una zona de 10m de un cultivo que no es un huesped para el hongo para reducir el impacto del clima del bosque, en esta area. Esto va a proteger los bosques también, pues son tapavientos beneficiosos.


8 pages

Holding Location

Monteverde Institute


English; Spanish

Media Type



Digital Only





Rates of fungus infection in coffee plantations at varying distances from forest edge



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