I am so excited to give you guys the scoop on what houseplants like coffee grounds. I am always looking for a great natural fertilizer for my house plants and funny enough, leftover coffee grounds are a popular choice for me! Not only do my indoor houseplants thank me but I love that I don’t have to just dump them out after use. 

What Houseplants Like Coffee Grounds?

Did you know that used coffee grounds are a great way to improve your plant’s soil and help with water retention? Use coffee grounds as part of your potting mix to give your soil vital nitrogen and essential nutrients. Plus, you can feel good about putting things to their best use, and reducing waste along the way. Win, win, win!

Adding fresh coffee grounds to your plant soil will also help invite worms, scare off pests and diminish weed growth. There are so many benefits of coffee grounds being mixed with your plant’s soil! After you drink your cup of coffee in the morning, add the grounds to your potting soil, and thank me later! Make sure that you are putting just as much water if not more, to keep your plants healthy and growing. 

The use of coffee grounds in your plant’s soil is great for many plants but not for all. Some plants, like tomato plants, thrive off of alkaline soil and won’t do well with the added coffee grounds. 

Believe it or not, you may be able to get free coffee grounds at your local coffee shops. They often have leftover old coffee grounds that otherwise would get thrown away. So, you are a coffee lover but which plants in your home will also thrive off of coffee? 

Here are 12 houseplants that tend to respond well to coffee grounds:

This list of plants contains plants that will appreciate your fresh grounds, however, each one in different ways, so read on to learn more!

1. Snake Plant

snake plant

To help your snake plant really thrive in the growing season, you will want to add coffee grounds to the top of the soil. It is a good idea to add coffee grounds to your snake plant because the nitrogen in the grounds will really help them grow. Be sure to dilute the coffee grounds prior to putting them into the mix for your garden plants. 

2. Spider Plant

what houseplants like coffee grounds spider plant

Use your compost pile made from your used coffee grounds to help your spider plants grow and thrive. Combing one part coffee to three parts water is an excellent choice for your spider plant. 

3. Christmas Cactus

what houseplants like coffee grounds christmas cactus

The proper care, when it comes to your Christmas cactus and coffee grounds, is to make sure they are dry prior to mixing into soil. Coffee grounds are great for your Christmas cactus and may even be better than store-bought fertilizer. It is an excellent way to get your plant to grow and thrive because of all the potassium and nitrogen your coffee waste provides. 

4. African Violets

african violets

The best way to use coffee grounds for your African violets is to use a small amount. You will want to sprinkle some (a little at a time and not too often) into the soil for the best results. 

5. Golden Pothos

golden pothos

For your golden pothos, it is best to add two cups of coffee grounds to 5 gallons of water and let sit for a few hours or overnight. The pothos plants can only handle a small amount of coffee grounds in their soil at a time, so use it sparingly. 

6. Jade Plant

what houseplants like coffee grounds jade plant

The acidity of coffee grounds will be great for your jade plants’ growth because of the magnesium and potassium in them. However, due to the high nitrogen content in coffee grounds, you will want to dilute the grounds prior to putting them in the soil for your jade plant. 

7. Carrots

what houseplants like coffee grounds carrots

If you have an outdoor or indoor garden and are growing carrots, you may already know the secret trick to grow bigger carrots! To get that extra boost for your carrot to grow, mixing dry coffee grounds with the carrot seeds when planting, will give it an extra boost of nitrogen it needs. 

8. Blueberries

what houseplants like coffee grounds blueberries

Coffee grounds add some, but not too much acidity to the soil which blueberries love. Having slightly acidic soil may stunt the plant growth of some plants, but blueberries thrive in soil that is slightly acidic. You will want to add two cups of coffee grounds for each blueberry bush and make sure that each one has a small amount spread out around them. 

9. Azalea

what houseplants like coffee grounds azalea

Another plant that thrives off of higher acidity levels. The nitrogen-rich soil will help your azalea plants grow with super strong stems and leaves. Apply the composted coffee grounds to the base of the plant to help attract worms to the plant. 

10. Roses and Miniature Roses

what houseplants like coffee grounds roses

Roses require copper, potash and phosphate which coffee grounds can provide to your roses. When you mix coffee grounds into the base of your rose, it will help the stem and leaves grow beautifully. Coffee grounds are a great source of nitrogen for your roses; however, be sure not to use too much because it may burn the roots of the bush. Roses also thrive off of organic materials so coffee grounds would be a great addition to their soil. 

11. Peace Lilies

peace lily

Coffee grounds can be used occasionally as a natural fertilizer for the Peace Lily to promote healthy growth.

Fun story about the peace lily: We once had landscapers plant a bunch of peace lilies beside our house in direct sunlight. They very quickly started looking unhappy and were withering away in that bright light. This is when I learned that peace lilies prefer low light, and I proceeded to dig each and every one of them up and put them in pots around my house. Yes, crazy plant lady alert. So there’s another tip for you – before you plant anything, be sure you know if that particular plant would like that particular location!

12. Ferns


Ferns can benefit from the organic matter and nutrients found in coffee grounds. Work the grounds into the top layer of soil for best results.

Why Do Plants Like Coffee Grounds?

Plants can benefit from the use of coffee grounds for several reasons:

Nutrient Source:

Coffee grounds contain various nutrients that plants need, such as nitrogen, potassium, and phosphorus. These nutrients are essential for healthy plant growth, including the development of leaves, flowers, and fruits.

Organic Matter:

Coffee grounds are a form of organic matter, which can improve soil structure, water retention, and aeration. When added to the soil, coffee grounds can help create a more favorable environment for root growth.

pH Adjustment:

Coffee grounds are slightly acidic, and some plants, like azaleas, rhododendrons, and blueberries, prefer slightly acidic soils. Adding coffee grounds can help maintain or slightly lower the pH of the soil, making it more suitable for these acid-loving plants.

Microbial Activity:

Coffee grounds can encourage the growth of beneficial microorganisms in the soil, which can aid in nutrient cycling and improve overall soil health.

Slow Release of Nutrients:

Coffee grounds break down slowly over time, providing a steady and gradual release of nutrients to plants. This slow-release characteristic can be particularly beneficial for plants’ sustained growth.

Repellent Properties:

Coffee grounds can have repellent properties against certain pests, such as ants, snails, and slugs. Sprinkling coffee grounds around the base of plants may help deter these pests from causing damage.

Texture Improvement:

Coffee grounds can help improve the texture of heavy or compacted soils, promoting better drainage and root development.

Recycling Waste:

Using coffee grounds in your garden or for potted plants is a sustainable way to recycle kitchen waste. It reduces the amount of organic material that ends up in landfills and contributes to a more eco-friendly gardening approach.

It’s important to note that while coffee grounds can offer these benefits, they should be used in moderation. Excessive use of coffee grounds can lead to issues such as soil compaction or imbalanced nutrient levels. To maximize the benefits and minimize potential drawbacks, it’s a good idea to mix coffee grounds with other compost or potting mix and to monitor your plants’ responses to the treatment.

what houseplants like coffee grounds?

How often should I add coffee grounds to my plants?

The frequency at which you should use coffee grounds on your plants depends on several factors, including the type of plants, the amount of coffee grounds used, and the specific needs of the plants. Here are some general guidelines to consider:

Plant Type: 

Different plants have different nutrient requirements and sensitivities. Acid-loving plants like azaleas, rhododendrons, and blueberries may tolerate coffee grounds more frequently, as they benefit from the slightly acidic nature of the grounds. However, for other plants, it’s best to use coffee grounds more sparingly.

Soil Type: 

If you have heavy or clayey soil, coffee grounds can help improve drainage and aeration. In this case, you might use coffee grounds more often to gradually amend the soil structure.

Coffee Grounds Quantity: 

Using a small amount of coffee grounds is generally recommended. Too much coffee grounds can lead to imbalanced nutrient levels, soil compaction, or pH changes. As a rough guideline, aim to use no more than 20% coffee grounds in your compost or potting mix.


Monitor your plants closely for any signs of overuse or adverse effects. If you notice yellowing leaves, slow growth, or other signs of stress, it might be an indication that you’re using coffee grounds too frequently.


Consider the growing season when determining the frequency of coffee ground use. During the active growing months, you might use coffee grounds more sparingly, while during the dormant season, you can reduce or stop their application.

As a general rule of thumb, you might consider adding coffee grounds to your plants’ soil once every few months or seasonally. For acid-loving plants, you could incorporate them more frequently, perhaps every 4-6 weeks, but in smaller quantities. Always err on the side of caution and start with a small amount before gradually increasing if you see positive results.

Remember to let coffee grounds dry out before adding them to the soil to avoid mold growth. It’s also beneficial to mix the coffee grounds with other compost or potting mix to ensure a balanced nutrient profile and prevent over-concentration in one area.

Ultimately, the best approach is to pay close attention to your plants’ response and adjust your coffee grounds application accordingly. If you’re uncertain, it’s a good idea to consult with local gardening experts or your local nursery for personalized advice based on your specific plants and growing conditions.

Coffee Grounds and Plants

If you are like me and love to find ways to waste less, I hope knowing what plants like coffee grounds will help you use those in a new way! 

Don’t want to waste your used coffee beans in the morning? Put them to good use by mixing them into the soil for your plant babies and helping them grow. Whether you have indoor plants or outdoor plants, the good thing is that you can use your used coffee grounds to get them stronger and thriving. Cheers to your coffee cup and happy planting!

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