Wednesday, April 16, 2008

A Good Cup of Java

I think most, if not all gardeners compost in some manner. I know my garden would not be complete without a compost bin. I have a large compost bin and am always looking for things to compost.

One great and free thing for your compost are coffee grounds. My friend Geri and I stop by Starbucks to get their old coffee grounds all the time. They package the grounds up in nice foil bags and place them in buckets in their stores. These grounds are free for the taking, first come, first served.

You can see Geri has been busy collecting and storing coffee grounds in the above picture. She really should get those bags into her compost! Though to be fair, I have been kind of hoarding some bags in my car as well. I currently have four that just can't seem to make it to the compost bin. Maybe that is because I am always on here updating all of my lost pictures!
I have read coffee grounds may be a bit on the acid side on the ph scale. Therefore, composting first is recommended before using in the garden, unless you are spreading them on camelias, azaleas or rhodies. But, I have spread coffee grounds over all of my gardens with no ill results.

I think most coffee shops would gladly give away their old grounds. Starbucks' program is called, "Grounds for your Garden". I like the convenience very much.
Happy composting and here's to a good cup of java. We all need one after that HUGE Garden Bloggers Bloom Day yesterday. I know I do!

in the garden....smelling the warm rich smell of coffee grounds.


  1. What another great way to compost and recycle! I put our coffee grounds in the pile too but never thought to get any from stores such as Starbucks! What a great idea! Tina, do you spread the grounds by themselves on the azaleas?

    Up early today to post on “Pet People” (topic; Begging cats) and also for the Saint to help me remove sheets from plants before he headed to work. All plant faired the snap. Our temp was sitting on 37 so did not get as cold as they were calling for. The sheets over the Japanese Maples had ice crystals on them though so glad we covered them. They took such a beating last year with the late Easter weekend freeze. We will do whatever we can to bring them back to their beauty this year. They look so pretty now…

    Off to Dental cleanings then to lunch at our favorite Pizza place. This pizza is the nearest to the real stuff we had in Italy! Yum..

    Have a good day all…

  2. Skeeter - Ming has decided our 'Douglas Firs' are Macra Carpa.

    Re. Commissary - are you all in the military round there?

    Coffee grounds - I've found they go mouldy rather than composty. What kind of worms do you have in your compost?

    (We've got Brandlings)



  3. Thank you for the tip, tina! I already collect the meager grounds we have from the house (my husband drinks coffee) and what little we have at the office (only two people there drink coffee)- this would really amp up my amount! Thanks for sharing!

  4. Good morning all! Skeeter is quite excited she is the first one on here this morning. She and I both remember when she'd be the only one! Nice having so many to talk to.

    Skeeter, Yes, I open the bags and sprinkle the grounds everywhere. That is when my garden smells the coffiest!

    Glad you covered-especially those J. Maples. My sheets had lots of ice on them too and I had to dry them thourougly. They were soaked!

    Esther, Sometimes the coffee grounds are a bit moldy when they are left in the bag, but I feel that only adds to the organic matter in the compost. It quickly disappears and rots.

    I have tons of worms everywhere now. And other things in my compost like a tiger salamander once. That was a shock. The birds and voles also love it all. Not sure the type of worms. I hope they are the good kind though.

    I retired from the Army after 20 years. Now I indulge myself (with hubby's blessing)in my passion for gardening. I was an air traffic controller and miss it sometimes. Not shift work and not the Army though. I would remember every morning after physical training, I would come home to shower and change into my uniform and could barely drag myself back to Fort Campbell. The garden is so awesome in the morning when the dew is on the roses...

    Clarksville is somewhat of a military town. At least that is sometimes (when it is convenient for Clarksvillians) what it is touted as. Other times the military is blamed for all woes Clarksville has and then the leaders don't want to be military affiliated, except when there is money involved. And we have some woes. The woes come from mostly locals who are set in their ways and somewhat superficial when it comes to welcoming the military. On the one hand they are VERY supportive and patriotic, but when it comes to action, it is lacking. I know from personal experience and see it all the time first hand. That and the money driven folks who make a living off of soldiers. Having been around military all my life I find all come from different backgrounds and are different, it is true. But they are usually very respectful and used to following rules and considering others. Not to mention friendly as you need to be when you move every few years. Not so with the locals. Quality of life needs to improve here. Such a shame they don't learn a few more things from the military folks and see them for people. Just my opinion and views. I guess a soapbox view.

  5. suzyq-I really enjoyed reading your blog last night and I have added to my list to read. Sigh-so many! Glad to have found you thru GBBD! Coffee grounds are the best-especially when prepackaged!

  6. Good morning to all my great cyber space friends.

    Skeeter when I was growning up and for many years after my "second family" was Italian and were all born and raised in Italy and they had NEVER hear of pizza till they came to the states. But oh the food that they did cook!!!! Wish I had some now and their houses ALYAWS smelled sooooo good as there was always some kinda sauce on the stove and there it stayed all day.

    Coffee grounds are great and Nana saved all hers way back in the 50's when most people did not save things like that. That does help the coffee places save money and help other people so that is great to know. Another thing that is good to spread directly around the plants you mentioned are ashes from your fireplace. Coofiest!!! Now is that a word to put on the yearly new word list?

    Tina I think a lotta military towns are just as you stated.

  7. We're up to 14 votes so far! Good!

    I keep forgetting to mention it but remember when my tip to BACKYARD LIVING was published? They sent me a courtesy copy of the magazine with a congratulatory letter and ALSO a lovely windchime I am going to put right outside my computer window. That was so nice I need to head on to their website and say thanks! It even came FedEx!

    Skeeter, Glad you can eat some pizza now. How much weight did you lose?

    Mom, I usually compost most of my ashes before putting them around my plants but in small quatities it is ok, like with coffee grounds. You have to be careful of the ph factor with both of these organic things. I just came to get my windchime and look where I am?! So much to do in the garden...tomatoes and peppers and cannas planted. Now to basil, peonies, and a buckthorn. Anyone ever heard of this? From the midwest I think? Hi Dawn, Anonymous, Lola, Nina, Gail and Dave, and my oldest daughter by one minute-Christylynn!

  8. And Frances too and everyone else that we haven't heard from this morning! Enjoy the day outside.

  9. Hi Tina --done with the school stuff --actually saw your post with baby Joshua first:) I don't compost but I do have a huge pile of fireplace ashes in the backyard --so that counts, right? Very nice day --I need to get outside with the sidekick. Wow, I am envying Skeeter having some pizza that is similar to Italy --I can only make that kind at home if I want that effect. I really miss my pizza margherita and the pizza place in Lerino, Italy. I hope to someday get back there --as I sit here and drool. Hi Jean, Nina, Lola and Dawn. It is sure a nice spring day so I better get off here. See you all later:)

  10. Dental apt were canceled this morning. The spring pollen has gotten to the dentist and the hygienist! Both out sick. But we were so looking forward to our pizza that we went ahead and met for lunch anyway! Pizza was yum and we did not indulge too much! Only two plates at the buffet! LOL. Jean, I love all Italian foods!

    I lost 12 pounds during recovery and the Saint lost also since I was not cooking for him. He knows how to cook he just chose not to during the work week so he had simple sandwiches. He lost a few pounds also. We felt so much better in our clothes that we are continuing to eat light (except for today) and loose weight! Good Side effect of surgery I reckon...

    Tina, I think you summed it up pretty clearly about how Clarksvillians fill about the Military!

    Esther, my hubby was in the Air Force for 4 years and for the past 19 years has been a Government contractor supporting Computer System’s for the Army. We were in Germany for 6 years at which time we were given Military benefits such as Commissary privileges. I also chat and at times, post on a Pet People Blog with the local newspaper (Clarksville is my hometown but I live in GA) and most of those animal lovers have military ties as well. The pet people do what they can for animal causes from foster, clean cages at local shelters, conduct benefits, to give money… The military gets a bad rap at times but we are all good people and give so much of ourselves! Like with all groups, there are some bad apples but the majority are good apples!

    Getting so green here! While in town I could not help but admire the green trees on the drive home! I so enjoy the beautiful green colors in spring!

    I never had a compost pile until all the talking about it on this blog a while back. Now I have a big pile for the Saint to turn weekly! I did put kitchen scraps:veggies, fruits, egg shell, coffee grounds in the planter by the chimney until my big pile started. Worms galore in there. Red Wigglers and Earth worms...

  11. Anonymous, Yes, fireplace ashed count-now just add some coffee grounds and food scraps and eggshells. Birds love picking the eggshells up. School, just a few more weeks. Don't know if that is good or bad.

    Skeeter, You are making me hungry for pizza as I love it! Forget the dentist! Allergies and they are all sick? It is hitting here too. Good you both lost a few pounds, that is never usually bad. Mostly always good.

    Your compost must be good to have the Saint turn it each week. My son Brian used to do mine. Now whenever he comes i beg him to do it. He doesn't like to but does it. Good son. Hubby and Jimmy, no way.

    Been planting ALL day and feel like I am spinning my heels and haven't gotten anything done. So much work, I sometimes forget what planting is like. I like fall best. Raking is ok, much better than planting. How about you guys? Would you rather rake or plant?
    You know I really do love this area and the people, but think some change would be good. People are people no matter where you live or what your job happens to be. The way of life.

  12. Rake or Plant, that could be another poll.... LOL...
    I will take planting any day!

  13. Cool that Backyard Living sent you something. That was well worth a few mintues of typing on the puter. Good jab!!!

    Never heard of that plant but sounds interesting. Wonder if it is like my Crown of Thorns?

    LOL. yup....1 mintue.

    No contest....PLANT

    Gail I still have you and family in my thoughts and prayers.

  14. Hello All,
    We don't drink much coffee here but thanks Tina. Now I know where I can get some grounds, maybe. I never thought about getting them that way.

    Sorry you had to miss your dental apt. But glad about the pizza. I like it too---more cheese, please.

    I agree, a lot of times the military gets a bum rap but for the most part they are treated with respect. Sometimes it does help to live around all military.

    So glad baby Josh had a good day. That first special day is great. They are so sweet. Treasure every minute.

    Think I'd rather plant. Get to play in dirt more that way. lol

    Hope all had a great, pleasurable day & wishes for a peaceful, restful night.

  15. Forgot to mention Tina. I think it's neat about the wind chimes. They did me about the same---I won one of their contest & read on line of winners before they sent me anything.
    I keep looking & reading to see who did what. It's a nice book, I enjoy.

  16. Looks like everyone would rather plant. OMG, I would never have thought that. I hate it because it is so time consuming but mainly because you have to think and find spots. Raking is mindless and I enjoy the cleaness after it is done. Soon it will be fall though so I better be careful on wishing..

    The windchime is so nice, but mainly considerate and thoughtful to take the time and add a personal touch. That is why I appreciate it so much. I have about a dozen or so but what's another one?

    Lola, No coffee in the morning? If I don't have my cup I get a caffeine headache and don't even know where the headache comes from. Anonymous reminded me one day. The lightbulb came on. Don't forget coffee. Grounds from Starbucks is not well known, just passing it along from another gardener who told me several years ago. She gives me lots of tips. Thanks Diann if you are reading this!

    Long day, I am sunburned, forgot the sunscreen today. Need to rest for my outing tomorrow. ttyl

  17. Oh dear Tina, with your red headed complexion you should be more careful and not forget things like sunscreen. Tsk, tsk, a mother always!!

  18. I dont drink much coffee and when I do drink coffee, I drink decaf. Saint laughs at me and says that is not real coffee! I get caffeine headaches too easily so the best for me is to avoid it if I can... I like (decaf) hot tea and put the tea bags in the compost too...

    Tina, I must have missed out on the chat about you getting something in a magazine! Fill me in... I get the yearly ornament from Birds and Blooms magazine each year as that is the time of year when I renew subscriptions! I got a little hummingbird wind chime and a butterfly windsock for something from them but cannot remember what it was for. I did not get anything published though... My new magazine came today! Neat picture of an owl on the nest with its babies!

  19. mom, it is really ok. i think everyone gets a bit sunburned this time of year. i put on the sunblock today. thanks for your concern.

    skeeter, i think we did talk about it all when you were out of the net with your tonsilectomy. i had submitted a tip to Backyard Living to use plastic bags your newspapers come in to tie up tomatoes and bramble fruit. they last forever, are easy to spot, and are easy to remove and untie (no scissors needed). i had no idea they printed it this month or had even accepted it.i subscibe and they send monthly emails with a link to submit tips. they must get thousands and i in no way expected mine would make the cut. glad it did though. i might have to submit more (if i don't blog them all). lola told me on here when she saw my name. she said she about fell out of her chair. they sent me a courtesy copy and a lovely windchime for thanks. i thought the personal touch very, very nice.

    i also get birds and blooms. love all of the gardening magazines. i get alot and read them religiously, though lately i have been on here so much i haven't read them all. i do catch up on the weekends though. i like the ornaments they send out.

  20. That is great Tina! I sent in a story to Birds and Blooms a long time ago but never heard from them. Heck, it was so long ago I dont even remember the topic I wrote! Ha, I am sure the magazines get tons of stuff daily and it is exciting that you stuck out to them! Great idea with the bags! My grandmother used old nylons (stockings) to hold her tomatoes to the stakes! How redneck is that but she was very thrifty…

  21. Skeeter, Old nylons have so many uses and people used to use them for all sorts of things. One thing that I always like was stuffing home made stuffed animals or repairing one that had opened and lost its stuffing as the could be thrown in the washer and dried quickly.

  22. Jean, Have you ever heard of using old nylons to put melons in to help keep the weight off the vine? Or anything that gets kind of heavy that grows on a vine. You just put the fruit or veggie in the nylons then tie the nylons to something real strong. Works great.

  23. I have heard that Lola and also onion bags.

  24. Skeeter, I too have tried to get stuff published with no luck. Mainly Readers Digest "Humor in Uniform". I've seen a bunch of funny stuff. Never worked. Frustrating. Try to submit a tip to Backyard Living thru their online site, you never know.

    Mom and Lola, I use nylons in my garden too. I keep them around and always save them, then can't seem to find them when i need them! That is how I ended up with the plastic bags. These actually hold up better than nylons which tend to rot fast. But nylons and onion bags definitely have their uses in the garden...

  25. I have taken panty hose & cut the legs in about 1" wide sections--open up & you have a ring that can be used to tie up things that are tender. I use them to tie up my thorn less blackberry & tomatoes. Works great.

    Really tired--large crowd at funeral home. Saw people I haven't seen since my dear hubby passed on.

    Sure hope it's good weather tomorrow. I have a few plants I received that I must get into ground or pots.

    Kids got home ok. They are wired as usual.

  26. Ah, those nylons are so useful in many ways...LOL

    Lola, I am happy that you saw people you have not seen in many years but not so happy for the circumstances...