Oromia, Sidamo, Ethiopia
The Wolayta zone of the Oramio region (also spelled Wolayita or Welayta), is so named after the Welayta people. Mildly undulating hills and dark red soil are characteristic of this zone. While the soil—an average of 30 meters deep and virtually free of rocks—has a sandy, light texture when wet. But when dry it is brick-hard, making plowing impossible.
In Ethiopia, more than half of the coffee is called “garden coffee,” because it’s grown in the yards of producers, along with crops such as beans, bananas, avocadoes, and mangoes.Coffee’s origin is shrouded in mystery but is thought to have begun in Ethiopia, where heirloom varieties still grow wild beside the road. As the story goes, a drowsy goatherder named Kaldi noticed his goats were perkier after nibbling on the coffee trees, and tried the cherry for himself. Caffeine was discovered, and coffee’s epic began.