Humans aren’t the only ones who like a nice cup of coffee! Plants, soil and even worms love a serving of coffee. Coffee grounds have many advantages and benefits for your garden, so if you have coffee grounds at home, or can pick them up from your local cafe, here’s how to use them in your garden.
Adding coffee grounds to your compost can actually help the food decompose faster than normal. Just make sure that your added coffee grounds do not exceed 25% of the total compost heap as the acidity can cause problems. Coffee grounds are considered as ‘green’ compost material so make sure you balance these out with ‘brown’ compost material such as dry leaves, newspaper, wood chips or sawdust.
2. Soil enhancer
Sprinkle a thin layer of coffee grounds around your plants. Do this before you water your plants or before rain is due, that way the water will seep down and take the nitrogen from the coffee grounds into the soil.
Make your own mulch by mixing wood chips or sawdust with coffee grounds. The coffee grounds help to regulate the mulch’s moisture so that it doesn’t get too dry. It also helps in keeping the mulch aerated, maximising usage.
4. Dry fertiliser
Spread your coffee grounds on a sheet of newspaper. Let the grounds dry and then store them in a bag. Use your dried grounds as a nitrogen-rich fertiliser within three weeks.
5. Wet fertiliser
Mix 225g of coffee grounds into 9 litres of water and let the mixture sit for a day. Pour onto your plants that are in need of some nutrients. Alternatively, leftover diluted coffee works well too.
Some gardeners believe that the smell of coffee grounds and its make up help to keep insects and pests away. Sprinkle coffee grounds around your plants and garden to keep those pests that like munching on your fruit and veges out! The theory is that the caffeine in the coffee grounds negatively affects these pests, so they avoid soil where the coffee grounds are found.
7. Foliar spray
Soak coffee grounds in water and use the mixture as a spray for your plants. Spray the whole plant, including the underside of the leaves. The coffee grounds add nutrients to the water that can boost the strength of your plants.
8. Fungus prevention
Coffee grounds have been known to keep your plants strong and healthy, even enough to ward off fungal infection. Sprinkle the coffee grounds around the stem and base of your plants.
9. Worm food
Worm farms are a great way to get essential nutrients into the soil of your garden beds and containers. Worms love coffee grounds. Add some soil to your worm farm and watch the nutrients come piling into your soil.
10. Ward off animals
Many animals (especially cats and dogs) do not like the smell of coffee grounds, which is great if you have unwanted visitors traipsing through your garden! Spread the coffee grounds wherever the animal likes to make itself at home.
Coffee grounds and gardening go together naturally. Whether you are composting with coffee grounds or using coffee grounds around the garden, you will find that coffee can give your garden as much of a pick me up as it does for you.