Roses are acid-loving plants, making coffee grounds a seemingly perfect addition to their soil, but before you leave the local coffee shop with a bag of grounds in addition to your favorite coffee drink, educate yourself on their proper use.
Coffee grounds are commonly sprinkled around roses as a soil amendment to lower soil pH and provide nutrients for plants. The Washington State University Extension Master Gardener notes that earthworms may be partially responsible for the soil improvements observed, as they deliver coffee grounds and their compounds deep into the soil.
Coffee grounds have a reputation for being acidic, but when mixed with compost, the grounds lose much of their acidity. Many coffee grounds may be too acidic for even acid-loving plants. Grounds may also release too much nitrogen, causing plants to develop fewer flowers in favor of foliage.
Using too many grounds spread too thickly can limit moisture and air movement, warns the Washington State University Extension Master Gardener. The extension representative suggests limiting coffee grounds to a 1/2-inch layer.
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