Do you want to give your plants a boost but hate the idea of spraying chemicals everywhere? Are you looking for a natural way to improve the colour and strength of your blooms?
Few people realise how used coffee grounds can be used to give your garden a new lease of life. These leftovers are usually thrown away after they have been used but you can stop them going to landfill by using them in the backyard.
They can be used with hundreds of different plants and shrubs to give your plot a much needed dose of nutrients.
Why does it work?
Here’s the science behind using coffee grounds in gardening. Plants love nitrogen rich soil, it is one of the main nutrients flora and fauna need to help them grow fast and strong. Leftover coffee grounds are full of nitrogen which helps seeds germinate faster and allows them to take root quicker.
But aren’t coffee grounds too acidic?
This is actually a common misconception, while unused coffee is slightly acidic, once it has been brewed the actual pH level goes down to near neutral making it perfectly safe for your soil.
How do I use them?
There are a few ways you can use your leftover coffee grounds to help your garden. Firstly, once you’ve brewed your coffee take some leftover grounds and mix them with water. This should be roughly a quarter grounds to three quarters of plain, fresh water.
Then pour into a watering can, or even just a bucket with some fine holes in the bottom, and use to sprinkle over your lawn or pour directly onto your flowerbeds and pots. Not only does this stop the grounds from clumping, it also helps them to sink down through grass particularly well rather than getting caught on the blades.
Another way to use coffee grounds is to add them to your compost heap. Mix an equal amount of coffee grounds with eggshells, leaves, paper and cardboard to get the right balance of chemicals in your compost. Mix it thoroughly and in around three months you will have well rotted, nutrient rich soil for potting or digging into the garden.
If this all sounds like too much hassle, you can just sprinkle coffee grounds straight onto the soil. Just throw some around the base of your plants and then use a fork or trowel to turn the soil over and mix them in well.
I don’t drink coffee, where can I get some?
You can actually pick up coffee grounds for free. I’ll say it again, completely FREE! Many chain coffee shops such as Starbucks will happily give you as much as you can take away. All you need to do is turn up with a clean, dry container and ask a barista for help. It is best to come at the end of the day as they will have built up a lot of leftover grounds for you to collect. Not only will you help them as they won’t have to send the coffee grounds to landfill sites, but it doesn’t cost you a penny!