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Casa Verde: Grounds For the Ground

Sure, your morning cup of Joe can give you a boost of energy, but did you know that it can do the same thing for your garden? Used coffee grounds are high in nitrogen, which your plants need to reach their growing potential. Some plants, such as corn, which can really tax the soil, can especially benefit from an espresso habit.
Not a coffee drinker, but want your garden to benefit from the caffeinated drink? Ask your local coffee shop to save its grounds for you. You'd be surprised how many coffee shops are willing to do so. In fact, mega-chain Starbucks introduced its Grounds For Your Garden program 15 years ago. In this program, customers can ask to receive complimentary five-pound bags of used coffee grounds to enrich their garden soil.

Want to know how to use coffee grounds in your veggie patch? Find out when you


  • For a slow-release nitrogen fix in your garden, sprinkle the grounds around your plants before it rains.
  • Add used coffee grounds to your watering pail for a diluted nitrogen boost.
  • Improve your compost pile with this nitrogen-rich nutrient.
  • Before you plant your garden, mix used grounds into the soil, then turn with a shovel or hoe to mix thoroughly.
  • Add some grounds to the bottom of the pot in houseplants or flower pots to add some oomph to their growth.
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Ellenora Ellenora 5 years
If you have a dog, you don't want to use coffee grounds in your garden if your dog has access to the garden.
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