Coffee Grounds in the Landscape
If you are as big a fan of a good cup of Joe in the morning as we are, you may find it surprising to know that those used coffee grounds you have been throwing away would provide the same pleasure for your plants.
Of course anyone who composts knows that coffee grounds and coffee filters are a staple in the compost bin, but many do not know that just tossing the grounds into the beds and scraping them in a bit can really benefit your flower and veggie beds too.
Coffee grounds are an excellent amendment for our alkaline Central Texas soil. Coffee grounds of course are an acid (though varying degrees and perhaps not as much as you may have thought) which helps balance the PH in our soil. What is especially awesome is the added benefits coffee grounds provide such as Nitrogen, magnesium, calcium, potassium and trace minerals.
Coffee Grounds can be used around plants to deter snails and soft-bodied pests and you can also make a tea from used coffee grounds by adding two cups of coffee grounds to 5 gallons of water. Steep over night and spray.
When adding coffee grounds to the flower and veggie beds it is best to rake or dig the grounds into the top couple of inches of soil instead of just throwing it on the ground. If you just toss the grounds on top of your soil the coffee will dry out and become impenetrable and make it difficult for your plants to get adequate water. By scraping it in you are incorporating it into the soil and allowing the micro organisms that live there to break down the grounds slowly over time which allows the grounds to act as a slow release fertilizer.
Earthworms are also big fans of your discarded coffee grounds and they think they’re quite tasty. When the earthworms consume
the grounds they release the nutrients deep into the soil from their “leavings” and you benefit from the same slow release nutritional benefit which is a big win, win where I come from.
If you are coffee drinker, but prefer to pick yours up at a local coffee shop ask them for their left over grounds. They are free and many companies actually bag their grounds up for customers to use for this reason. It might just make the cost of that fancy cup of Joe more palatable. You could also snag the grounds from work in the name of being “green”.
However you get your caffeine fix, remember that your pick me up will perk your plants up too.
Now go get your organic garden on!
Lisa’s Landscape and Design (“like” me on Facebook)
“Saving the Planet One Yard at a Time”
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