Coffee Grounds for Roses – Are they Good? 

Rose plants produce dozens of beautiful fragrant blooms that everyone enjoys. But did you know that using coffee grounds is an affordable way to achieve beautiful flowers? 

Roses flourish in well-draining neutral to acidic soils. And what is the easiest way to achieve a neutral to acidic soils other than using coffee grounds?

Coffee grounds contain the three most essential nutrients. That is, nitrogen, potassium, and phosphorous that roses need in moderate quantities. The nitrogen in coffee grounds attracts microorganisms. As the microbes feed on coffee grounds, they loosen the soil. This helps improve the soil’s structure, drainage, fertility, and aeration. 

So, using coffee grounds will ensure that your roses flourish throughout the season and produce beautiful blooms.

Are coffee grounds good for roses?

Coffee grounds for roses

Coffee dregs are good for roses because of the high content of the three essential nutrients that roses need in moderate quantities. Roses flourish well in neutral to acidic soils. The easiest and cheap way to achieve the exact soil conditions is by adding coffee grounds. 

Coffee grounds also attract worms that help loosen the soil, improving soil aeration, water infiltration, and water retention. The loosening of the soil also gives roots more space for growth and absorption of the essential nutrients the roses need. 

Benefits of Coffee Grounds on Roses

Coffee grounds contain nutrients that support a healthy growth of roses. Here are some of the significant benefits of coffee dregs to roses:  

  • Coffee grounds help meet a neutral to acidic pH suitable for roses.
  • Coffee dregs contain nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium, nutrients that roses need in moderate quantities. Roses depend on nutrients for an healthy growth and production of beautiful blooms.
  • Attracts worms that loosen the soil, improve soil aeration, soil structure, water infiltration, fertility and water retention. The loosening of soil also gives the roots enough space for growth and absorption of nutrients.
  • It is a naturals deterrent to pests and insects such as slugs and mosquitoes. The coarse texture of coffee grounds and toxic compounds, caffeine and diterpenes, keeps insects and pests away.
  • Fresh coffee grounds help kill fungi.

How to Use Coffee Grounds on Roses

Are you wondering how to effectively and appropriately use coffee grounds? Always use these applications at the start of the growing season. To avoid late-season growth, which will not survive the first frost of winter.

Here are the four suitable applications you can use:

1. Mixing coffee grounds with water

Mixing coffee dregs with water dilutes the concentration of excessive nitrogen that burns and kills the roses. Here is how to do it:

  • Take ½ pound of coffee grounds and place them in a watering can. Do not exceed ½ a pound into a gallon of water for each plant.
  • Add 2 gallons of water, that is, the standard size of a watering can.
  • Shake the mixture to achieve a smooth solution with no residues.
  • Use your ready solution to water the rose plants twice a month. This helps the nutrients infiltrate into the soil faster and also attracts worms.

2. Prepare a Compost

Composting coffee grounds reduces the acidity levels, enhances nutrients level and minimizes the emission of greenhouse gases. Here is the composting procedure:

  • Add coffee grounds into your compost pile to meet a stable carbon and nitrogen manure.
  • Balance the compost heap ingredients. Add 1/3 of dry leaves or shredded paper coffee filters, 1/3 of coffee grounds, and 1/3 of fresh grass. Then mix.
  • Adding dry leaves or shredded paper to the pile acts as a source of carbon. 
  • Coffee grounds fasten decomposition. However, adding excess coffee grounds slows the heating process, slowing decay. 
  • Apply a layer of the compost around the roses in a depth of about 1-2 inches. The compost inhibits weed growth, improves water infiltration, water retention, and soil aeration.
  • Do not apply the compost around the rose plants stem. It could cause the stem to rot. Always leave about an inch around the stem clear of manure.

3. Sprinkle coffee grounds onto the soil

This is a risky alternative if not well handled. It can lead to stem rot, locking preventing enough infiltration of water and eventually of your roses. Below are the steps:

  • Add coffee grounds and nitrogen fertilizer into the soil at the same time.
  • Then water the soil around each rose plant with a whole watering can.
  • As worms break down coffee grounds, the nitrogen fertilizer provides enough nutrients for your plants.

4. Mix coffee grounds with wood ash

Mixing coffee grounds and wood ash produce a balanced nitrogen-carbon combination.  

Wood ash is a good source of carbon, and coffee grounds a source of nitrogen. Here is the procedure:

  • Mix used coffee grounds and wood ash in a ratio of 3:1.
  • Apply the mixture into the soil around the plants and water. 

Are there any risks to roses and soil?

Using too much coffee ground too often, puts your roses and soil at a great risk. The following are some of the major risks to roses and soil:

Potential risks to roses

  • Large amounts of coffee grounds can burn and kill your roses.
  • Coffee grounds around the stem of rose plants can cause stem rot.
  • High levels of nitrogen from coffee causes stunted growth of rose flowers.

Potential risks to the soil

  • High acidity levels will change the soil’s pH.
  • Excess caffeine in the soil can lead to the death of plants.
  • Large amounts of coffee grounds can kill earthworms instead of attracting.
  • Antibacterial properties kill microbes in the soil.

References

  1. Oregon State University, Extension Services: gardening/techniques/coffee-grounds-composting