Ask a Question forum: Can I use coffee grounds as a soil?

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MrRamirez
Sep 27, 2017 6:19 PM CST
I have no soil, all I have is liquid fertilizer and I heard coffee grounds contain nitrogen, the plant I will be using is a cannabis seedling. Also will one 24 watt cfl work for the first week?
Name: Daisy I
Reno, Nv (Zone 6b)
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DaisyI
Sep 27, 2017 6:44 PM CST
You should wait until you have some real soil and better lighting. Coffee grounds are not a soil substitute and a 24 watt cfl is equivalent to a 100 watt incandescent light bulb. It will never work.
Life is not a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in a pretty and well preserved body, but rather to skid in broadside, thoroughly used up, totally worn out, and proclaiming...."WOW What a Ride!!" -Mark Frost

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California
MrRamirez
Sep 27, 2017 7:14 PM CST
DaisyI said:You should wait until you have some real soil and better lighting. Coffee grounds are not a soil substitute and a 24 watt cfl is equivalent to a 100 watt incandescent light bulb. It will never work.


I have already germinated, should I just add to my compost?
Name: Daisy I
Reno, Nv (Zone 6b)
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DaisyI
Sep 27, 2017 7:57 PM CST
Do you have an outdoor compost pile that is busily composting? If so, that may be the perfect place to grow your baby cannabis.
Life is not a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in a pretty and well preserved body, but rather to skid in broadside, thoroughly used up, totally worn out, and proclaiming...."WOW What a Ride!!" -Mark Frost

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Name: Yardenman
Maryland (Zone 7a)
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Yardenman
Sep 27, 2017 9:57 PM CST
DaisyI said:Do you have an outdoor compost pile that is busily composting? If so, that may be the perfect place to grow your baby cannabis.


Not that I have ever grown cannabis (really), but from where they thrive, they seem to like rich soil and moderate sunlight.

Potting soil has little nutrients. Maybe some potting soil with 1/4 compost would help...
Name: greene
Savannah, GA (Sunset 28) (Zone 8b)
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greene
Sep 28, 2017 10:41 AM CST
Don't want to send you off-site but elsewhere on the internet, there are entire forums for growing cannabis. Here is a link to one and what they have to say about coffee grounds. After you read all that, please come back to NGA.
https://www.thcfarmer.com/comm...
Sunset Zone 28, AHS Heat Zone 9, USDA zone 8b~"Leaf of Faith"
Name: Yardenman
Maryland (Zone 7a)
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Yardenman
Sep 28, 2017 10:45 AM CST
greene said:Don't want to send you off-site but elsewhere on the internet, there are entire forums for growing cannabis. Here is a link to one and what they have to say about coffee grounds. After you read all that, please come back to NGA.
https://www.thcfarmer.com/comm...


A quick read says a tablespoon of coffee grounds to a gallon of soil. Well, I wouldn't object to that about growing almost anything.

But I would say the same about a tablespoon of almost any organic matter. And, as I don't drink coffee, its a bit moot for me. LOL!

Name: Deb
Pacific NW (Zone 8b)
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Bonehead
Sep 28, 2017 11:08 AM CST
No need to go offsite. Cannabis is quite an easy plant to grow, hence its common name of weed. Why do you not have soil? Get yourself a pot of some sort, grab some dirt from anywhere, and put your little seedling in it. Water it regularly and give it good light. It sounds like you are doing this indoors, so turn your pot every few days to equalize the light. Add coffee grounds or compost or anything else you like. Easy peasy.
I want to live in a world where the chicken can cross the road without its motives being questioned.
Name: Philip Becker
Fresno California (Zone 8a)
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Philipwonel
Sep 29, 2017 10:14 AM CST
Yep ! Sort of like Bonehead said.
I think it got its name because ! It grows like a weed. Grows faster than any other plants, and it dosent really care where or what kind of soil.
I don't belive anything woud grow in pure coffee grounds. Hum ?πŸ˜•??? Sounds like an experiment to me.πŸ‘ΉπŸ‘ΉπŸ‘Ή
If your growing in a pot. Don't add any outdoor dirt to pot. I've heard and read that in pot,outside dirt will stagnate, and die, and probably kill your plant.
Good luck :thumbsup:

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Eastern Massachusetts (Zone 5b)
jsf67
Sep 29, 2017 11:29 AM CST
> a tablespoon of coffee grounds to a gallon of soil.

Sorry to go off the real thread topic (Cannabis), but I'm curious about the title thread topic, and a bit scared by that tiny suggested ratio.

In my case, I'm trying to create a subsoil bed. Next spring I will be figuring out what to use for the real soil for planting rooted Rhododendron branches (those branches are currently still attached to the big shrubs but on the ground covered with dirt (have been for a month or two). Past experience says they'll be ready after the main shrub flowers next spring to cut off, replant and water all summer.

With no way to find the right balance between over watering and under watering, I'm hoping to get some porous and worm rich subsoil for underneath, which would tend to buffer any watering mistakes. The location had the worst clay soil of anywhere on my property. But for other reasons I dug a VERY big hole (much more than twice the depth Rhododendron roots will ever reach). Part of that I already built back up and have a previous batch of Rhododendrons on top of. The other part, I have been throwing in lots of yard waste (weeds, leaves, etc.) plus lots of coffee grounds: far more than a tablespoon per gallon, probably a cup per gallon. I am hoping any excess of whatever coffee grounds have too much of will percolate (pun intended) up only slowly into the soil the Rhododendrons will be growing in. It isn't yet up to the bottom of where the soil the Rhododendrons will grow in will start. So I could stop including coffee grounds, to further insulate that excess. I don't plan to buy any dirt. The only easily available dirt is the clay that came out of the hole originally. I am putting tiny amounts of that back, but less than the coffee grounds and I don't think any larger amounts are a good idea. When the time comes to plant, big part of the project will be finding slightly better dirt elsewhere in my yard and mixing it about 50/50 by volume with pine needles, which seems to make a good porous soil for Rhododendrons. But I won't have more of that mix than the minimum needed. So the layer under that must be a more available porous material.
[Last edited by jsf67 - Sep 29, 2017 11:30 AM (+)]
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Name: Elaine
Sarasota, Fl
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dyzzypyxxy
Sep 29, 2017 11:53 AM CST
Any organic material in just about any amount is going to improve your clay soil. A winter's worth of rain and snow should leach out most of anything in the coffee grounds. I throw a lot of coffee grounds out into my garden and don't see any problems from doing so.

I think the idea of a tablespoon per gallon of soil might have been meant for container plants. In a container, there could be too much of a good thing with adding coffee grounds on a regular basis.
Elaine

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Name: Sally
central Maryland
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sallyg
Sep 29, 2017 12:11 PM CST
The original question, 'can I use coffee grounds AS soil" implies to me, 100% coffee grounds in a pot. No. Way too muddy in texture and maybe , maybe, too much nitrogen and not enough else.

Coffee grounds outside- practically no limit, unless you work at a coffee joint (ha) and have a very small garden bed and gallons of grounds. Seriously, coffee grounds have had a lot of the good stuff already dissolved out of them and drunk by people. How 'strong" can they really be, mixed in garden dirt?

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Name: Daisy I
Reno, Nv (Zone 6b)
Not all who wander are lost
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DaisyI
Sep 29, 2017 12:19 PM CST
Around here, Starbucks will give you a bag of coffee grounds free of charge. And its a really BIG bag!
Life is not a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in a pretty and well preserved body, but rather to skid in broadside, thoroughly used up, totally worn out, and proclaiming...."WOW What a Ride!!" -Mark Frost

Webmaster: osnnv.org
Name: Philip Becker
Fresno California (Zone 8a)
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Philipwonel
Sep 29, 2017 12:22 PM CST
jsf67 : I agree With Elaine.
Plus. I've read that used coffee grounds, don't have much acid left in them to change PH.

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Anything i say, could be misrepresented, or wrong.
Name: Sally
central Maryland
Seriously addicted to kettle chips.
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sallyg
Sep 29, 2017 3:33 PM CST
DaisyI said:Around here, Starbucks will give you a bag of coffee grounds free of charge. And its a really BIG bag!


That's nice. Not all do.
..come into the peace of wild things..-Wendell Berry
Life is a buffet (anon)
Name: Porkpal
Richmond, TX
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porkpal
Sep 29, 2017 3:51 PM CST
Come on Philip, give it a try, plant something in coffee grounds and tell us how it grows!
Porkpal
Eastern Massachusetts (Zone 5b)
jsf67
Sep 30, 2017 7:00 AM CST
> Any organic material in just about any amount is going to improve your clay soil.

I dug a VERY big hole and I'm putting back very little of the original dirt. So the remaining original clay soil will be too far from the Rhododendrons to influence their drainage. By eventual dry weight, I'd estimate this subsoil will be 5% original clay soil, 14% coffee grounds, 2% better dirt from elsewhere in the yard, 5% pine needles, 25% leaves and 49% weeds. As I add the materials gradually, it has been clearly more than 500% weeds, but more than 90% of the bulk of weeds vanishes in the first couple weeks.

Anyway, I'm not amending clay soil with a lot of organic material. I'm contaminating a giant pile of organic material with a tiny amount of clay soil. I'm sure that would be too little dirt for growing Rhododendrons. The hope is that it is OK material for absorbing excess water sitting below the soil I will add next spring for growing Rhododendrons.

Thankyou, those answers have reassured me that 14% coffee grounds, sitting all winter before I put the plants there and under (rather than in) the soil the plants' roots will grow into, is nothing to worry about.
Name: bron
NSW-Qld border Australia
DD + her little ones
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bron
Sep 30, 2017 7:34 AM CST
There is a business in Fremantle Western Australia where they use (only) coffee grounds in small hanging sacks to grow shitake and other mushrooms. I was surprised the grounds did not go mouldy since leftover coffee does, and tea leaves do.

I put coffee grounds around plants that slugs love. Don't know if that or other tricks have worked. I also toss it onto my very clay soil.

I think that if used exclusively very finely ground coffee might compress into a poorly draining medium. I would add pea size gravel. But no idea what drainage cannabis needs.

I read this week that a Canadian firm have a licence to grow medicinal cannabis in Mullumbimby in northern New South Wales. Don't know how they will be doing it, but many people have been prosecuted for growing cannabis illegally using indoor hydroponics and lights. They were often detected from the huge electricity usage.
@jsf
Name: Deb
Pacific NW (Zone 8b)
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Bonehead
Sep 30, 2017 8:45 AM CST
My absolute best cannabis crop was grown in an old sandbox, probably 1.5 feet of pure sand over native soil. No fertilizer. Lots of water. Full sun. So, I can assume they like sharp drainage.
I want to live in a world where the chicken can cross the road without its motives being questioned.
Name: Sally
central Maryland
Seriously addicted to kettle chips.
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sallyg
Sep 30, 2017 3:45 PM CST
I think that if used exclusively very finely ground coffee might compress into a poorly draining medium. I would add pea size gravel.

A wet dense soil cannot be fixed by adding pea gravel. Visualize a bowl of pudding with marbles dropped in. The pudding fills all the space between the marbles, as the dense soil will fill between gravel and drown the roots.
..
..come into the peace of wild things..-Wendell Berry
Life is a buffet (anon)

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