What Are Coffee Grounds Good For? (My Experience)

Coffee grounds, the leftover waste of your morning cuppa joe, are often tossed in the garbage or flushed down the drain. 

But what if I told you that there are other ways to put those coffee grounds to good use? Coffee grounds have many benefits for your yard and garden, from fertilizing plants to eliminating pests. 

If you’re not sure about using them as fertilizer for your lawn and garden, below are some facts that may change your mind:

Coffee Grounds: How And Why We Use Them In Our Garden
There are many potential uses for coffee grounds, including as a natural fertilizer for plants and as an ingredient in DIY skin care products.
Coffee grounds can also be used to neutralize odors, clean household surfaces, and even dye fabrics.
When using coffee grounds in the garden, it’s important not to overdo it as they can increase soil acidity and harm certain plants.
Additionally, make sure to compost your used coffee grounds rather than throwing them in the trash.
Overall, coffee grounds are a versatile and eco-friendly ingredient that can have many benefits both in and out of the garden.

What Are Coffee Grounds Good For?

Coffee grounds are a great addition to your garden, as they add both nutrients and moisture to the soil. Coffee grounds are also high in nitrogen, which is one of the main components of fertilizer. When used as fertilizer, coffee grounds improve the health of plants by increasing their overall growth and making them less susceptible to disease.

If you’re trying to kill weeds in your yard with coffee grounds, it’s important to remember that they aren’t herbicides; they won’t kill all types of weed-like vegetation (such as grass). 

While some weeds will die off after being treated with coffee grounds, others may not be affected in any way at all!

If you’re considering keeping backyard chickens, check out our article on how they can benefit the environment. You’ll learn about their positive impact on pest control and nutrient recycling, among other things.

How Can I Use Them In My Garden Or Yard?

If you don’t want to use coffee grounds in your lawn or garden, but would still like to make sure they have a purpose, here are some options.

  • Use them as fertilizer. Coffee grounds are high in nitrogen (which is good for plants), potassium, and magnesium. They can be used as mulch around the base of plants or used directly on top of the soil for the same effect.
  • Make compost with them instead of buying expensive compost from the store! Coffee grounds contain carbon which helps balance out all those nitrogen-rich green foods you’re feeding your microbes with.

Soil that’s too alkaline can get too much calcium from lime being put down by humans over time (or even natural limestone), causing it to become more acidic over time. 

You can correct this by adding coffee grounds directly into the soil near plant roots they’ll help drive down pH levels and make things more hospitable for those growing things!

Ideas for Using Coffee Grounds in Your Yard or Garden

FertilizerCoffee grounds are rich in nitrogen, phosphorus, and other nutrients that can benefit your soil and plants. Sprinkle them evenly around your garden or mix them into your compost pile.
MulchCoffee grounds can help to retain moisture in the soil and add an attractive, dark color to your garden beds. Spread a thin layer over the soil and mix with other organic matter like leaves or bark chips.
Pest ControlCoffee grounds are a natural deterrent for slugs, snails, and even cats. Sprinkle them around the perimeter of your garden beds to prevent these creatures from munching on your plants.
Seed StartingUse coffee filters filled with coffee grounds as a biodegradable seed starter. Place one filter in each section of an egg carton or other seed starting tray, add soil and seeds, then plant the entire thing in the ground when the seedlings are ready.
CompostingCoffee grounds are high in nitrogen and can accelerate the decomposition of other organic matter in your compost pile. Simply mix them in with your other compostable items like food scraps and yard waste.

Can I Use Coffee Grounds To Fertilize My Lawn Or Plants?

The short answer is yes. Coffee grounds are actually one of the best fertilizers you can use for your lawn, plants, and trees! 

It contains nitrogen, which is a key nutrient for grass; coffee grounds also contain potassium and calcium. In addition to being rich in nutrients, coffee grounds are also a source of organic matter that improves soil structure.

Which type of coffee grinds should you use? The finer the grinds you use (i.e., espresso vs drip), the more quickly they will break down into compostable materials like CO2 gas – so if you’re looking for quick results from using coffee grounds as fertilizer then go with fine brews like espresso or French press instead of coarse grinds such as Turkish or drip filters

Looking for innovative ways to use coffee grounds around your home and garden? Check out our guide on what coffee grounds are good for to explore their benefits for everything from fertilizing plants to warding off pesky insects.

Will Coffee Grounds Kill Plants, Or What If I Put Them In A Planter In My Yard?

Coffee grounds won’t hurt your plants, but they also won’t help them. Coffee grounds are acidic, which means that they’ll kill some plants. They are not a fertilizer and can’t be used as one either they’re not even particularly good mulch for the garden or yard because of their acidity.

Coffee grounds have been used as a pesticide in gardens to get rid of ants and other insects around the house, but this method is dangerous to pets and children who might come into contact with them (and therefore ingest them). 

Coffee grounds should be kept away from kids, pets, and any other animals in your home or neighborhood!

What If I Put Them On The Soil Of My Houseplants And Trees?

If you have a houseplant or small tree that is growing well in your yard, then you can use coffee grounds as fertilizer for it. But if you want to grow plants that like alkaline soil, such as azaleas and blueberries, then do not put coffee grounds on their roots. If the plant has white flowers with yellow centers, it may be sensitive to caffeine.

Did you know that ants can be beneficial for your yard and garden? Our article on how they can be good for your landscaping explains how they help to aerate your soil and control pests.

What Kind Of Plant Needs Coffee Grounds To Grow Well?

If you want to grow plants that like acidic soil, coffee grounds are a good choice. Plants that need nitrogen include beans, cucumbers, and corn. Shade-loving plants that can benefit from the addition of coffee grounds include azaleas and rhododendrons.

Will Putting Coffee Grounds On A Lawn Hurt The Grass?

If you want to use coffee grounds on your lawn, then you should be aware that the acidity of the grounds can burn grass if it is applied directly to a green lawn. 

If you mix one part coffee grounds with three parts water, then this mixture should not damage your grass as long as it is sprayed onto the soil and watered well. 

You could also try mixing one part coffee grounds with two parts sand or compost and spreading that thin over the area where you want to grow grass so that it will grow better and be less susceptible to disease.

Have you considered using ashes in your yard and garden? Learn more about the benefits of this natural fertilizer in our guide on how ashes are good for your yard, including their ability to add important nutrients to your soil.

Can You Use Coffee Grounds As Fertilizer For Plants That Are Not Lawns?

Yes! Coffee grounds are also great for other types of plants, including vegetables and flowers. They’re a great way to add nutrients to the soil without having to buy expensive fertilizers or chemicals.

Another benefit of using coffee grounds as fertilizer is that they help deter pests and bugs from eating your plants by adding an unpleasant taste or smell when they come in contact with it. This is particularly useful if you have animals like squirrels who enjoy digging up your garden and feasting on whatever tasty treats you’ve planted there!

Are There Certain Types Of Plants That Will Not Grow Well With Using Coffee Grounds As Fertilizer?

Coffee grounds are not good for citrus plants or tomato plants. The acidity of coffee grounds can cause damage to the roots of these types of plants. Additionally, if you put them in a planter and the plant’s roots touch the coffee grounds they may absorb some of those chemicals and die. 

Do not use coffee grounds on eggplant, peppers or squash either because they also contain acids that can damage these plants.

If you’re interested in adding more animals to your backyard ecosystem, our article on 10 animals you can raise in your backyard is a great place to start. We cover everything from honeybees to rabbits and provide tips for raising these creatures safely and sustainably.

How Many Cups Of Coffee Do You Need To Make Your Yard Look Good?

In order to use coffee grounds in your yard, you should first have some idea of how much you need. Basically, the more coffee grounds you apply to a given area of soil, the more fertilizer it will provide. 

A good rule of thumb is to use 2 cups of coffee grounds per square foot when fertilizing your lawn or garden plot. 

So if you want to fertilize an area that’s 15 feet wide and 20 feet long (150 square feet), then all you need is 30 cups of ground coffee that’s about 12 pounds! No worries though you don’t need that much coffee in order for it not only to work effectively but also to look good too!

How Do I Dispose Of Used Coffee Grounds Once They’ve Been Used On My Lawn?

  • Compost them. If you have a compost pile, coffee grounds are an excellent source of nitrogen and will help to speed up the decomposition process.
  • Put them in your garbage. Coffee grounds are basically just organic matter and will break down pretty quickly once they’re buried underground or in a landfill.
  • Use them to make a new batch of coffee! But if you don’t want to drink it, then throw it away in your trash can along with everything else that goes inside there (including used paper towels).

How Do I Get Rid Of A Skunk In My Yard?

If it is a skunk, you need to find out where it lives.

If it is a mother with babies, you need to make sure she has food and water available before moving them. She may also be sick or injured and in need of medical attention.

If the animal is not sick or injured, then there are several things that can be done to deter it from coming back into your yard: place strobe lights around the perimeter of your property (one every 10 feet), spray ammonia on areas where they have been spotted (the ammonia will attract their natural predators), build a fence with chicken wire around problem areas like compost piles or get rid of any debris laying around that could attract animals

Tips for Getting Rid of Skunks in Your Yard

ExclusionSkunks are great diggers, but they can’t climb. Identify and block off any entry points to decks, sheds, or other structures with mesh fencing or sheet metal that extends about nine inches underground to prevent digging.
RepellentsThere are several repellents on the market that can help deter skunks, including motion-activated sprinklers, predator urine, and electronic sound or light devices.
TrapsLive traps can be used to capture and relocate skunks. Contact your local wildlife management authority to learn about local regulations and restrictions.
Natural RemediesHomemade skunk repellents include spraying a mixture of vinegar and water around your yard, and soaking old rags in ammonia and placing them in areas where skunks have been spotted.
Professional HelpIf you’ve tried other methods that haven’t worked, or if you’re uncomfortable handling the situation, contact a professional wildlife control service to safely and humanely remove the skunk from your property.


So, you’ve learned what coffee grounds are good for, how to use them in your garden or yard, and if they will kill plants. You can also learn about disposing of used coffee grounds once they have been used on your lawn or in a planter box. 

You may want to feed them to your pets or use them as fertilizer for plants that are not lawns. There are certain types of plants that will not grow well with using coffee grounds as fertilizer but most types do well with this natural fertilizer

Further Reading

Healthline’s article covers various uses and benefits of coffee grounds, including skin care, cleaning, and composting.

HGTV’s guide discusses how to use coffee grounds to fertilize your garden soil and offers tips for incorporating them into your compost pile.

The Barista’s list provides unique and creative ideas for repurposing used coffee grounds, such as making candles and upcycling your furniture.


What are some common uses for coffee grounds?

Coffee grounds can be used in a variety of ways, such as a natural fertilizer for plants, composting, and odor neutralizer.

Can you use coffee grounds for skin care?

Yes, coffee grounds can be used for skin care by applying them as a natural exfoliant or a DIY face mask.

How do coffee grounds benefit your garden?

Coffee grounds can add nutrients to the soil, improve drainage, and even fend off pests.

How can you use coffee grounds in your home?

Coffee grounds can be used to scrub away tough stains, mask odors in the fridge, and even as a natural dye for fabrics.

Are there any downsides to using coffee grounds in your garden?

While coffee grounds have numerous benefits, it’s important not to overuse them as they can increase soil acidity and harm certain plants.