Coffee Grounds for Orchids: An Effective Fertilizer or a Mistake to Avoid at All Costs?
Did you know that coffee grounds are a superb fertilizer? Instead of throwing it away, you can use it to nourish your plants. However, you must be careful which species you’re feeding them to. While hydrangeas, magnolias, and camellias will welcome it with open roots, others won’t be as hospitable. What about using coffee grounds for orchids? Our gardening experts discuss all the dos and don’ts of this organic elixir.
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Using Coffee Grounds for Orchids: Yes or No?
As well as boosting the growth of your plants in the garden, coffee grounds can also be used for your indoor potted plants. The reason why they are so nourishing is that they are rich in potassium, phosphorus, nitrogen, magnesium, and copper. Ground coffee also acts as a natural insect repellent. When used on orchids, it boosts their growth and aids the blooming process, while also protecting them from pests and diseases (mealy bugs, mites, thrips, etc.). However, it is important to know how and when to use it in order to achieve maximum results, and that’s where our experts come into play.
How to Use Coffee Grounds as a Fertilizer?
If you’ve been taking care of orchids long enough you probably know that they need a substrate rich in nitrogen, potassium, and phosphorus. Lucky for us, coffee grounds contain all of those, which makes them perfect for the job! So, next time you make your morning cup of coffee, keep the residual and dry it in the sun, or in an oven. Make sure that the coffee is completely dry, otherwise, it can lead to the molding of the soil. You also need to be careful not to add too much ground coffee, or it will have the complete opposite effect and it will hinder the flowering. Also, if the orchids are ill or infested, you need to hold off the fertilizer. Last but not least, you can add coffee grounds to your compost to enrich it.
Read also: Is Garlic Good for Orchids? – A Surprising Hack for Keeping Your Flower Blooming All Year Round!
What’s the Best Natural Fertilizer for Orchids?
We don’t like to pick favorites, but if we had to, it would be rice water. Next time you cook yourself some rice, don’t let the water go to waste. Instead, use it as a fertilizer for your orchids. It’s a great source of vitamins and folic acid. Just as effective is potato cooking water. The banana peel purine is also a good orchid nutrient. It’s rich in potassium, magnesium, vitamin B and C. All you have to do is wash the banana peel, put it in an airtight jar or other container with water for 24 hours, and you’re done! Trust me, your plants will thank you!
Read also: What to Do with the Aerial Roots of Orchids? Should They Be Cut?
Reusing Coffee Grounds on Your Plants: Common Mistakes to Avoid
As we’ve just established, coffee grounds are super beneficial for nourishing your orchids, as well as aiding the blooming process. However, there are a few common mistakes to consider in order to get the best possible results:
- using coffee grounds to fertilize the soil of young orchids
- forgetting to dry them before applying
- using too much of them
- using the ground coffee when the plant is ill or infested by parasites
- forgetting to store the coffee in a cool, dry place
- using it to accelerate compost decomposition
Read also: Watering Orchids: 6 Care Mistakes That Even Experienced Gardeners Often Make!