How to Use Coffee Grounds in Your Home Garden


At the Green Square Growers event last Saturday, my friend Sabena (and fellow G S Growers co-founder) gave me a bag of discarded coffee grounds.

Coffee grounds are a waste product for cafés and many home kitchens, but they are a very useful resource for a gardener.

As coffee grounds have a high nitrogen content they are a brilliant addition in your compost heap.  They will not only help to attract earth worms (if your compost has direct contact with the ground) but will also help to raise the compost temperature – which speeds up the break down process.

Snails and Slugs
Apparently slugs and snails hate caffeine.  Turn coffee grounds into a diluted liquid and spray onto your plants to repel those pesky intruders.  Remember to reapply after rain.

Nitrogen Fix
Pumpkin, corn, zucchini and cucumbers are all examples of edible plants that require high amounts of nitrogen.   It’s a good thing that coffee grounds are high in nitrogen – sprinkle the coffee grounds on the ground around these nitrogen hungry plants (or add into the soil before planting).

Very soon, you too will be asking café owners if you can have their wasted coffee grounds.


3 thoughts on “How to Use Coffee Grounds in Your Home Garden

  1. I’m curious, are there plants that would definitely not want coffee grounds? Or, plants that do poorly with too much nitrogen rather.

    I use coffee grounds in my worm bins and sometimes my compost pile, but am leary when it comes to adding it to soil. I do sprinkle some around my roses, but that’s about it.

    Liked by 1 person

    • In regards to edible plants, I have found it all good James. I know some people have the belief that coffee grounds raise the acidity of the soil, however all the research I have read, showed coffee grounds when added to compost or soil, quickly breaks down to a neutral pH.

      It is possible to have too much nitrogen however in your soil. Caterpillars and aphids are attracted to soil with a surplus of nitrogen. As well as plants growing too fast without ‘thicking up’ and hence having to stake plants like corn, as they are tall and skinny.

      Liked by 1 person

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