Is Coffee Good For Plants ?

Watering Plants With Coffee

Is Coffee Good for Plants discusses the pros and cons of using coffee grounds to enrich garden soil and of watering plants with coffee to give them a nitrogen boost.

Hawaiian coffee plants growing at the Maui Tropical Plantation.

Coffee is good for your plants if you apply it properly. You wouldn't want to pour leftover coffee out of your mug onto a potted ficus. This is because you would probably have added milk or cream or something to it.

Sugar wouldn't be a problem because plants like sugar. Milk or artificial creamer, however, won't do your plants a bit of good. I don't know what effect artificial sweeteners would have.

Even if you take it black, it still wouldn't be a good idea to pour it right into a plant pot. It's too strong. You would need to dilute it first.

Diluted black coffee will not substitute for proprietary fertilizer, but it can give your plants an extra shot of nitrogen and acidify their soil a little.

Try watering plants with coffee that like an acid soil. They will benefit the most.

Roses and ferns have responded well to coffee water.

Feed Plants Coffee Grounds

Cherish Coffee
Cherish Coffee
Reed, Tara
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One of the best ways to reap the benefits of coffee in the garden is to feed plants coffee grounds. Just sprinkle your used grounds around the plants.*

This works better indoors and out. Indoors what happens is that each time you water the plants over the grounds, a bit of nitrogen will seep into the soil. Gardeners who do this say it invigorates their houseplants like nothing else!

Outside, the grounds will attract earth worms who like to eat them. The worms will burrow through the soil, aerating it and leaving castings behind in their wake. This is a good way to make a hard clay soil more friable.

If your soil is very alkaline, a good way to acidify it is to work in a large quantity of coffee grounds. You would probably need to collect them at work or from your local Starbucks to get enough.

Another way to give houseplants the benefit of coffee grounds is to mix them into the potting soil whenever you pot the plants up.

So, is coffee good for plants? The answer is a resounding YES!

*Espresso grounds are too fine to use as mulch. They can cake together and keep moisture out of the soil. Mix them in.


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