Help in the Garden, Courtesy of Starbucks….

used coffee grounds

The other day, my husband and I stopped by Starbucks for some coffee.  Starbucks for us is a guilty pleasure.  We don’t go there all the time.  Maybe 3 – 4 times a month.

Well, as we were waiting for our coffee to be ready, I noticed a bin filled with bags that caught my attention….

 coffee grounds

Some of you may be wondering what coffee grounds have to do with gardening.  Well they actually work in a variety of ways that benefit the soil in your garden.

Used coffee grounds:

– slowly release nitrogen into the soil

– improve the texture of both sandy and clay soils

– are loved by earthworms who ‘eat’ them and leave behind their coveted droppings

– are a source of phosphorus, potassium and micro-nutrients such as magnesium, copper and calcium

– can be used in compost piles instead of manure

So…..are you tempted to use coffee grounds in your garden?  Do not just throw them out in the garden.  You need to mix them with your existing soil.  Apply a 1/4″ layer and then rake them into your existing soil.

You can also use them in your compost pile.  Used coffee grounds are a ‘green’ compost material and shouldn’t make up more then 20% of your compost.

So, are you still wavering on whether or not to use them?  Okay, how about this fact:


**Starbucks gives their used coffee grounds away for free.  If you don’t often find yourself inside of a Starbucks, you can always use your own coffee grounds.

Now, maybe your local Starbucks doesn’t give away their coffee grounds. Well, you should ask.  The more people ask for them, the more likely they are to ‘bag’ their used coffee grounds and give them away.

You can always wait until the baristas are not busy and ask if you can have their used coffee grounds that they have right then.  You can even offer to take them in the plastic trash bag that they are already in.

Now, that I know that I can find used coffee grounds at my local Starbucks, I will just have to stop by more often and of course, I will have to get some coffee.

What a sacrifice….. 😉

“The Joy of Composting”

Noelle Johnson, aka, 'AZ Plant Lady' is a author, horticulturist, and landscape consultant who helps people learn how to create, grow, and maintain beautiful desert gardens that thrive in a hot, dry climate. She does this through her consulting services, her online class Desert Gardening 101, and her monthly membership club, Through the Garden Gate. As she likes to tell desert-dwellers, "Gardening in the desert isn't hard, but it is different."
7 replies
  1. SiestaSister
    SiestaSister says:

    I am not a coffee drinker, but I love Starbucks. I drop in whenever I need coffee grounds. One near me packages the grounds neatly in the silver bags. The other on dumps it all in a gigantic plastic trash bag. My thanks to Starbuck for making the coffee grounds available to gardeners instead of just dumping them in the trash.

  2. Darla
    Darla says:

    I have been known to just toss my grounds in the garden. Working the grounds into the soil around roses works wonderfully as well.

  3. Lona
    Lona says:

    I think it is great they give away their coffee grounds. We do not drink coffee. Does it work for tea grounds? LOL!

  4. Msrobin
    Msrobin says:

    Oh Noelle, you are preaching to the choir here. I'm a huge Starbucks fan who hates coffee. I'm addicted to their iced tea! I always say my roses are so beautiful thanks to Starbucks, because I use their free grounds all the time.

  5. David
    David says:

    What a great post. I've always heard that coffee grounds are good for your garden. Maybe I should start drinking coffee just to help the plants? LOL
    Hey, thanks for posting such a nice note about the June garden bouquet. I know things will get better and you'll be back and ready to 'bouquet' at the end of July.
    Happy Summer.
    David/ Tropical Texana/ Houston 🙂

  6. maccandace
    maccandace says:

    My hibiscus has been doing wonderfully so far this summer and we always baby it a lot during the summer so we think it must be the extra grounds it is getting this year.

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