The best part of waking up is coffee in your cup – then using your fresh coffee grounds in your garden. Whether you put your grounds and filter in your compost, add them to your soil as a mulching agent, or create a liquid feeder for your garden, using your daily coffee grounds to enrich your garden is a great way to invest your daily waste in a healthy and productive way.
Coffee grounds are rich in nitrogen but are also acidic. Therefore, they will help to enrich the soil to keep your plants well-fed, but will also lower its pH. This makes coffee grounds great for heavy feeding plants that tolerate acidity, like tomatoes, hydrangeas and begonias. So, if you are making your daily coffee and also growing a garden, the grounds can go full-circle back into your kitchen and stay out of a landfill.
If you don’t drink coffee or make coffee using coffee grounds, there is a growing trend for coffee shops to provide their used coffee grounds for you to take home and use in your garden. If you buy your daily coffee at work, depending on your workplace, they might even be able to supply you with leftover grounds.
Every day, Thunder Bay Regional Health Sciences Centre’s (TBRHSC) Flavours Cafeteria generates approximately 46 lbs of coffee grounds. In the summer during their Fresh Market onsite famer’s market, Belluz Farms picks up their weekly coffee grounds and uses them in their own compost. Until the Fresh Market starts in late June, one staff member has been taking one pail of grounds (approximately 15 lbs of grounds) home each day for her own compost.
When it comes to giving the grounds away to local farmers or staff members, Cathy Sawicki, Cafeteria and Catering Supervisor at TBRHSC, says “It’s a really simple way of trying to reduce, reuse, and recycle. We use empty muffin bins to put the coffee grounds in to divert the waste. It was really easy to incorporate this process into our duties too. In fact, it made things easier because we didn’t have to empty the garbage as often, double-line the garbage bags, and it made the garbage much lighter.”
This spring, try using coffee grounds to give both you and your garden a boost. It’s a simple way to reduce waste and get the most out of your grounds.