Think spring: Starbucks coffee grounds for the garden
Ground coffee is very good for fast-growing vegetables
Ground coffee is high in nitrogen, making it very good for fast-growing vegetables. (Photo by Charles Osgood)
Those coffee grounds are more a sign of spring for me than any robin. It means I can begin to get my beds ready.
Ground coffee is high in nitrogen, making it a very good for fast-growing vegetables. It is especially good for tomato plants, both for the nitrogen boost this heavy feeder needs and and for coffee's ability to help suppress late blight.
But I sprinkle the coffee grounds everywhere.
Last spring, I didn't bother with the little silver bags.
I asked my Starbucks guys to just tie up the giant plastic bag of spend grounds and I dragged it to the car. I'll bet I spread a couple of hundred pounds of grounds before spring was over.
The roses and the hydrangeas seemed to like the acid. But I spread the coffee grounds around all my shrubs and perennials and the spring rains soaked them in like a slow-released fertilizer. I dumped the extra into my compost pile to give it a nitrogen boost.
I have read testimony that coffee grounds are great for houseplants and for encouraging worms in your garden and discouraging slugs.
I can't say for sure that my gardens did appreciably better because of the coffee grounds. I could be just adding a chore to my long spring list.
But it gives me a good feeling to know all those grounds just don't go in the garbage behind my local Starbucks.