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Coffee grounds as mulch

Dale Hodgins
pollinator

Joined: Jul 28, 2011
Posts: 3772
Location: Victoria British Columbia-Canada
    
  53
      Coffee grounds are readily available and I've had good results spreading them around young trees as a mulch. They don't require any composting before application, they don't stink and I've had no problems with vermin. The worms seem to like them and they moved them throughout the soil. Most of my soil is a low grade of gravel/silt so the organic material is needed. The land was logged before I bought it. Areas which were mulched with coffee regenerated faster than where I let nature take its sweet time and the young alder leaves are a deeper shade of green.


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Dale Hodgins
pollinator

Joined: Jul 28, 2011
Posts: 3772
Location: Victoria British Columbia-Canada
    
  53
Reviving this dormant thread after 15 months. I should have mentioned that I picked it up at coffee shops for free. Weed seeds are not a problem with coffee and nutrient values are higher than with most manures. Most stops produced over 100 1b of material, so it's quite an effficient thing to gather when you're out and about. Wear old clothes and don't put it on the seat of your car. The big plastic bags often leak.

In a compost heap, coffee is easy to mix in and provides a nitrogen boost which promotes heating. By far the best soil amendment I've used.
Elisabeth Tea


Joined: Sep 08, 2012
Posts: 53
The problem with coffee grounds is that they are very acidic. OTOH, the great thing about coffee grounds is that they are very acidic. If you have blueberries, or other acid-loving plants, then feel free to mulch away.
John Polk
steward

Joined: Feb 20, 2011
Posts: 6495
Location: Moving to: NE Washington USDA zone 5 Western steppes to the Rockies
    
133
Coffee grounds are acidic before you brew them. The acid is water soluble, and most of it ends up in your cup of coffee.

Used coffee grounds typically have a pH of about 6.7 to 7.0 - way too alkaline to do your blueberries any good.

They will attract every worm in the neighborhood.

Fred Morgan
steward

Joined: Sep 29, 2009
Posts: 972
Location: Northern Zone, Costa Rica - 200 to 300 meters Tropical Humid Rainforest
    
  12
You haven't seen coffee grounds, or waste, till you visit a coffee plantation, just saying. The custom here is to use red worms to turn them into lovely castings, which are then brought back to the coffee plants.


Sustainable Plantations and Agroforestry in Costa Rica
Brenda Groth
volunteer

Joined: Feb 01, 2009
Posts: 4433
Location: North Central Michigan
    
    8
My husband drinks coffee and used to use only instant, but began brewing it in the past couple years. I have been putting his filters and coffee grounds on my garden since..it is probably too early to notice much but in the areas I have put them it seems to be healthier


Brenda

Bloom where you are planted.
http://restfultrailsfoodforestgarden.blogspot.com/
Elisabeth Tea


Joined: Sep 08, 2012
Posts: 53
Thanks for setting me straight, John. I love to learn new things before breakfast. It sets my whole day on a good note.
Dale Hodgins
pollinator

Joined: Jul 28, 2011
Posts: 3772
Location: Victoria British Columbia-Canada
    
  53
Fred Morgan wrote:You haven't seen coffee grounds, or waste, till you visit a coffee plantation, just saying. The custom here is to use red worms to turn them into lovely castings, which are then brought back to the coffee plants.



Am I correct in assuming that most coffee waste in the tropics would be the outer shells or pith or do many of the beans get roasted and ground for products such as freeze dried instant coffee in the place of origin ?
Rich Pasto


Joined: Dec 13, 2011
Posts: 97
the grounds are a fairly 'hot' source of nitrogen. three inches of shredded leaves, one inch of coffee grounds. layer to desired height. That will compost down in a few weeks.
 
 
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