Using coffee grounds in a vegetable garden can help to power your plants like never before.
The same can be said for putting them in flowerbeds, hanging baskets and container plants as well.
And while on the subject, they are pretty terrific in a compost pile too.
In fact, when it comes to helping out just about any living plant or organism, they quite simply rock!
Who knew the by-product of our universal wake-up, go-get-em beverage had so much value!
The Power of Using Coffee Grounds
It is amazing how quickly you can improve your soil with a few simple organic practices.
Working in compost to the soil is one of the best. As is adding in organic materials such as shredded leaves.
And there is always a huge benefit in growing a cover crop every fall.
But one of the easiest ways of all to help build your soil and power your plants is simply by using coffee grounds.
And best of all, they are completely free.
In fact, even if you don’t drink coffee you can get them at no cost.
Many local coffee shops are more than willing to save their grounds for gardeners.
All you have to do is ask!
We have had local coffee shops save them for us for years.
So What Makes Coffee Grounds So Great?
First and foremost, coffee grounds are an excellent, slow-release source of nitrogen.
And nitrogen is a key component in making flowers flower – and vegetable plants produce.
But in addition to providing nitrogen, coffee grounds add incredible organic material and matter to the soil.
All of which helps to improve the overall soil structure.
That results in better drainage, aeration and increased water retention for the plants growing in the soil.
Let’s take a look below at 5 great ways to use coffee grounds in your landscape.
1. In The Vegetable Garden
We use coffee grounds in a number of ways in our vegetable garden.
When we initially plant, we add a few tablespoons of grounds (along with worm castings, crushed egg shells and compost) to every planting hole.
This little concoction helps provide nutrients directly to the plants as they grow. See Our Article: 3 Big Garden Planting Tips
We also put coffee grounds on the soil surface around plants.
This serves two great purposes. It provides a slow-release of nutrients – and helps to repel slugs too.
Slugs delicate skins are easily cut as they crawl across the sharp edges of the grounds. So placing them around the main stalk can help keep plants safe.
Although not 100 percent effective as a deterrent, every little bit helps!
2. In Hanging Baskets and Planters
Coffee grounds are an excellent slow-release fertilizer for planters and hanging baskets too.
Along with worm castings, we add a few tablespoons of coffee grounds to all of our pots and containers every few weeks.
When the plants are watered, the nutrients from the coffee grounds slowly leach into the soil. As they do, the plant’s roots soak them up.
3. In Flower Beds
Much like with our vegetable plants, we use coffee grounds when we plant annuals in our flowerbeds.
A few tablespoons in each planting hole helps to power the plants. And it continues to help build the soil up each year as well.
They can also be added around the base of each plant as a slow release fertilizer.
4. Perennials, Shrubs and Trees
Yep, you guessed it.
Coffee grounds can help as you plant perennials, shrubs and bushes too!
Adding a few tablespoons when planting perennials helps add nutrients and soil structure for long-term growth.
For larger bushes or shrubs, we simply add a few coffee filters and grounds all at once around the planting hole.
The filters are bio-degradable. And as the grounds break down over time, they give back nutrients to the roots.
5. In The Compost Pile
In the spring, summer and fall, we use our coffee grounds in the landscape.
But in the winter, we use them to power our compost pile!
They are an excellent “green source” addition to a compost pile.
As a green source, they help heat up the pile. This means quicker decomposition – and a faster path to more compost.
Simply throw in your filter and grounds – and watch the magic happen!
Happy Gardening! Jim and Mary. If you would like to receive our DIY, Gardening and Recipe articles each week, sign up to follow the blog below.
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