Coffee Grounds: 6 Ways to Reuse Them

Here are a handful of reasons not to toss your coffee grounds and to use them in the garden, for fertilizer, to deodorize, and more.

From Extraordinary Uses for Ordinary Things (Reader's Digest Association Books) and
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    Fertilize plants.

    Don’t throw out those old coffee grounds. They’re chock-full o’ nutrients that your acidic-loving plants crave. Save them to fertilize rosebushes, azaleas, rhododendrons, evergreens, and camellias. It’s better to use grounds from a drip coffeemaker than the boiled grounds from a percolator. The drip grounds are richer in nitrogen.

    Keep cats out of the garden.

    Kitty won’t think of your garden as a latrine anymore if you spread a pungent mixture of orange peels and used coffee grounds around your plants. The mix acts as great fertilizer too.

    Deodorize a freezer.

    Get rid of the smell of spoiled food after a freezer failure. Fill a couple of bowls with used or fresh coffee grounds and place them in the freezer overnight. For a flavored-coffee scent, add a couple of drops of vanilla to the grounds.

    Don’t raise any dust.

    Before you clean the ashes out of your fireplace, sprinkle them with wet coffee grounds. They’ll be easier to remove, and the ash and dust won’t pollute the atmosphere of the room.

    Keep worms alive.

    A cup of used coffee grounds will keep your bait worms alive and wiggling all day long. Just mix the grounds into the soil in your bait box before you dump in the worms. They like coffee almost as much as we do, and the nutrients in the grounds will help them live longer.

    Boost carrot harvest.

    To increase your carrot harvest, mix the seeds with fresh-ground coffee before sowing. Not only does the extra bulk make the tiny seeds easier to sow, but the coffee aroma may repel root maggots and other pests. As an added bonus, the grounds will help add nutrients to the soil as they decompose around the plants. You might also like to add a few radish seeds to the mix before sowing. The radishes will be up in a few days to mark the rows, and when you cultivate the radishes, you will be thinning the carrot seedlings and cultivating the soil at the same time.

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