For many people out there, coffee is their morning refresher. They cannot start their mornings without a good cup of coffee. But did you know that there are many applications for it in your houseplants and garden?
The coffee ground is used as a popular compost material in many garden soils. If utilized well, they can work wonders on your indoor plants. However, it does not suit every plant. Thus, it becomes vital to know which plants like coffee grounds.
What’s in Coffee Grounds that plants Like?
If we go by the chemical composition of coffee grounds, they are full of nitrogen and potassium. Nitrogen, being a crucial element, is vital for the plants to grow. In addition, these grounds are acidic and include a significant amount of caffeine.
Therefore, if you desire to use these grounds as a fertilizer, always remember that they are acidic. When you add it to the soil, it can alter the pH levels by decreasing them. This change can be beneficial for some plants. While for others, it becomes a bane.
Before you add coffee to your plants, consider the type of soil. Check its pH levels using a testing kit. And how does caffeine affects the growth of plants? Humans may love the effect of the caffeinated cup but do plants like them?
Caffeine is often regarded as a substance that stops the growth of other plants. This results in the caffeinated plants getting all the water and nutrients in the soil of that region. So, should you really use coffee grounds in your houseplants? Let’s find out.
Benefits of Coffee Grounds For Indoor Plants
As aforementioned, nitrogen is essential for optimal plant growth. These caffeine-rich grounds are a great source to increase the nitrogen levels in the soil. Hence, you would not need to purchase expensive chemical fertilizers to do the same.
Furthermore, if you are trying to do vermicomposting in your garden, coffee grounds can assist you in accomplishing this by encouraging the growth of worms.
One study shows that coffee can increase the water retention property of the soil. This means that you do not have to water the plants as often. Also, it can even restrict weeds from growing. However, this same study concluded that the overall growth of the plants is decreased when coffee is utilized.
Keeping Pests Away
If snails and slugs are troubling you and your garden, coffee can help keep them away. Grounds are usually coarse, meaning that these pests won’t want to wriggle over them to reach your delicious plants. Furthermore, you can see many gardeners using these grounds as cat repellents. Cats can be annoying if they constantly dig around your plants or use the garden as a litter box. Thus, it will be better if you add coffee grounds to your garden’s soil.
Houseplants That Love Coffee Grounds
Now we know the benefits of caffeine-rich grounds. Now let’s introduce you to those houseplants that grow the best on these grounds.
The snake plant is native to the countries in West Africa. These are known for their ability to tolerate harsh conditions. Even if you show negligence toward the snake plant, it will reward you by purifying the air in your home.
Snake plants grow best when the pH of the soil is between 5.5 and 7.5. Since they require low maintenance, it is considered the most suitable option for carefree individuals. Watering them regularly will give them a diversified and unique look. If you desire to water them, liquid coffee will be an appropriate choice.
When choosing the best house plant, there’s no one better than the Philodendron. In fact, you can find it in almost every house garden. This American plant prefers a pH between 5 and 6 for its optimal growth. Thus, pouring coffee waste into the soil will be a suitable choice. Those small grains of coffee left at the bottom of the cup can help encourage the plant’s growth. It will also maintain the strength and flexibility of the plant veins.
Jade plants are popular among people due to their luck factor. Many people regard them as the money plant. Further, the pink flowers grown from it will add beauty to your garden. Adding the coffee ground to the soil will increase its water retention and provides stern growth to the jade plant.
Christmas Cactus originates from the beautiful seaside mountains located in southern Brazil. A coffee ground will help it to drain water well. Furthermore, it can provide various micronutrients to encourage its growth.
As the name suggests, this plant has its home in the continent of Africa. African violets crave acid and nitrogen way more than other plants. Therefore, feeding them with more caffeine won’t be harmful.
Cyclamen won’t mind sharing the morning coffee with you as they love acidic soil. Their pretty green leaves will add a sense of royalty to your garden.
Similar to African violets, these miniature roses love acidic soil way more than other herbs. Hence, you can directly pour the liquid coffee into it without worrying. Miniature roses are sure to fascinate and charm its gazers. Therefore, adding it to your garden with the coffee ground would give it an classy vibe.
Want to feel more rejuvenated every time you wake up in the morning? Then Golden pothos is an appropriate choice for you. This plant refreshes its surrounding, making it the best vine plant for your rooms. If enough sunlight is provided, golden pothos can be grown anywhere.
This acid-loving plant is native to the lands of South Africa. Since it requires pH between 6.1 and 6.5, you can add a bit of caffeine to the soil. Alternatively, you can water it using a diluted coffee liquid.
Ghost man plants are considered the purest lovers of acidic soil. Why? Because they need pH between 3.5 and 5.0. Low acidic soil will also work fine. But the growing season calls for high acidic conditions.
Other Plants That Like Coffee Grounds
Besides the above plants, here are some other shrubs and plants that grow well in acidic conditions:
- Maidenhair fern
- Wild strawberries
- Pepper, etc
These shrubs crave nitrogen and acids like none other:
- Highbush blueberry
- Duke, etc
Always remember to dilute the coffee grounds before sowing non-acid-loving plants in them. This is because the caffeine present can hinder the nurturing of these plants.
You need to check whether a plant flourishes in low pH soil. Some plants like carrots can mature well in coffee, while it is shown that used coffee shows allopathic properties which can stop tomatoes from growing.
The Bottom Line
The coffee grounds do come with their pros and cons. However, if used judiciously, it can become your biggest asset in the garden. It can restrain a plant’s growth, but it also holds the unwanted creatures away from the garden.
If you want to alter the pH of your soil, caffeine can help with it. Always check if the plant can work with caffeine before sowing it on a coffee ground. Nonetheless, a compost bin is always open if you are not so sure about using this morning refresher in your garden. The bottom line is that you can utlize coffee, but it will work wonders on certain plants only.