Should You Put Coffee Grounds on Your Plants?

If you’re both a coffee lover and a plant owner, you may be eager to recycle your coffee grounds, while potentially helping your garden or houseplants to grow. Though coffee grounds can benefit your plants, it’s not always as simple as dumping fresh grounds on top. Brewed coffee is quite acidic, but used grounds are pretty neutral — meaning they likely won’t do much harm or good in terms of pH. However, the remaining caffeine in your coffee grounds could inhibit seed germination and growth. Plus, piling grounds on top of your plants may prevent air and water from properly circulating and soaking into the soil. If used properly, coffee grounds can improve soil structure and may deter pests. So, what do you do? Take an indirect approach by sprinkling a small handful of grounds onto the soil and gently mixing them into the first inch or two. That will give air and water room to circulate and may actually encourage growth.