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Post by Chilli-head on 24th October 2016, 12:41 pm

Writing in the Guardian James Wong tells us we are all mistaken for adding coffee grounds as a mulch around plants.

Personally, though I and my work colleage drink a lot of coffee, I never have so much as to add as a mulch, and certainly not to 1" thick ! So instead, it goes in the compost. I presume any caffeine will have leached out pretty well by the time it finds its way onto the plot.

Actually, I remember when working on a well known organic farm that they took the waste grounds from a coffee factory to add to their compost, along with a lot of manure and other stuff. Their soil was rich and positively alive, and produced yeilds to match "conventional" farming, so I reckon it can't be all that bad.

An interestig aside on the coffee - at a presentation on aforementioned farm, someone asked if it wasn't a problem for organic growers to use coffee, since there are so many agrochemicals applied to coffee (and tea) in its production. Apparently not; they had done testing and pretty much all the chemical residues are leached out in the coffee brewing process. So the ground are clean because we've drunk the pesticide residues Shocked
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Post by freebird on 24th October 2016, 12:55 pm

That was an interesting read - but ours go straight into either the compost of worm bin. The worms don't seem to mind!
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Post by Chilli-head on 24th October 2016, 2:58 pm

freebird wrote:That was an interesting read - but ours go straight into either the compost of worm bin. The worms don't seem to mind!

It is interesting isn't it. And your comment about the worms is interesting, because one of the commonly claimed benefits of using coffee grounds is that it deters slugs, because the caffeine damages their nervous system. But in discussions about this, whether it also harms worms and other beneficials is also a question - it would seem the answer is "not a lot" !
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Post by Dandelion on 24th October 2016, 6:02 pm

I had read this article too - it was on a No Dig group I'm in on Facebook. The response there seemed to be the same, that coffee grounds in compost only do good, in that they accelerate the composting process and seem to have no negative affects. (Not sure if I like the idea of drinking all the chemical residues though!!!)

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The richer we have become materially, the poorer we have become morally and spiritually. We have learned to fly in the air like birds and swim in the sea like fish, but we have not learned the simple art of living together as brothers and sisters.

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Post by freebird on 24th October 2016, 6:33 pm

I wonder if this is a case of ' a bit is good, but more isn't necessarily better'.
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