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Looking for real world feedback on coffee grounds used for lawn top dressing...?

Discussion in 'Turf Renovation' started by Exact Rototilling, Jul 24, 2013.

  1. Exact Rototilling

    Exact Rototilling LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 5,362

    I believe we can all agree it is a good source of organic matter but I do wonder about the acidity issue...?

    Before I go bonkers in an effort to round up coffee grounds from latte stands....would like to know if it worth the effort compared to other sources of OM...?
    Last edited: Jul 24, 2013
  2. 44DCNF

    44DCNF LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,460

    I can't give you real world feedback to the acidity issue, as I don't often test it, but based on results obtained they do great in my compost pile (worms seem to love them and will congregate nearer to any that are added) and have been beneficial as a side dressing in the garden to both amend the soil and deter pests. Anywhere I've used my composted grounds on turf it does exceptionally well (repairs to problem spots, divots, etc.), but I've not applied spent grounds directily to topdress turf.

    Then too, my area's soil can stand a little acidification.
  3. Smallaxe

    Smallaxe LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 10,081

    The claim is that the 'acid', washes out in the coffee making process, so all the acid is now in your cup, not the grounds... like pine needles,,, not a contributor to acid soils...
    If worms love them then that alone will create fertile soil, if it builds a population...
  4. ausgrasscutter

    ausgrasscutter LawnSite Member
    Posts: 13

    I have started using in the last couple of months in Australia.have been getting somemreally good results mixing it with granulated soil wetter .even in the extremely dry weather we have had this season(spring nearly over coming iNto summer).if the acid level worries you I have read about using 3 parts lime to 1 part coffee grounds.to correct it. But have not had to do that yet. Best part about is getting is large quantities.
  5. greendoctor

    greendoctor LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 9,064

    It would be a heck of an improvement over the compost available to me. Too much magnesium, carbonates, and salts. My soils need acidification in most cases.
  6. RedSox4Life

    RedSox4Life LawnSite Bronze Member
    from Mass
    Posts: 1,476

    If be curious to know the truth about this. I've always heard to throw coffee grounds on hydrangeas to keep them blue (because of acidity), is this an old wives tale then? Also, can you explain why pine needles don't add acidity to the soil?
  7. kemco

    kemco LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 785

  8. Will P.C.

    Will P.C. LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 965

    I use them on my personal lawn but can't say it does anything. I emailed a professor from UGA about adding them to troublesome blueberry bushes and the way he put it the nutrient levels are so low that you don't see any 'real' difference.
  9. Smallaxe

    Smallaxe LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 10,081

    I always thought that coffee grounds were higher in N, than even soybean meal... Perhaps someone can find an article about that...

    Otherwise that was an interesting bit of research done in, kemco's article... I believe it covered all of the relevant information regarding the use of pine needles as mulch...
    all except for one: the actual testing of pH changes in the soil itself...

    That of course is long term and the idea of 'soil buffering' is also something that may break down over the long term, if given a chance... :)
  10. larryinalabama

    larryinalabama LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 16,985

    Might make the lawn smell nice. If your going to try to get coffee grounds from lattee stands you will kill yourself to get any amount

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