Coffee grounds are great for lemon trees if they are allowed to break down in compost first. Mix through coffee grounds and allow them to break down before adding them as a top dressing to your lemon tree. Coffee grounds are high in nitrogen and are a great soil additive before you plant your tree or as a top dressing.
Leftover chemicals in coffee grounds due to the processing can sometimes cause harm to your plants and soil. To prevent this from happening it is very important to let the coffee grounds break down.
This article will explore how to safely use coffee grounds for lemon trees. It is easy to use coffee grounds to improve your soil, top dressing or mulch.
How to prepare coffee grounds for lemon trees
Here are my easy tips to prepare coffee grounds for lemon trees. The best way to prepare coffee grounds for your lemon tree is to break them down in compost first. This will make the nutrients available to your plant and remove any chemical residue from processing.
1. Keep your coffee grounds in a container
The best way to collect used coffee ground is to use a knock box or a compost container. I had grabbed one for $5 from Ikea and this will fill up in a week. I also put food scraps in this container and collect them for my compost.
It is important that the container has airholes or the lid is lifted a little. Hot coffee grounds will create steam in the container and can cause them to go moldy. Allowing them to cool down before putting them in a closed container is important.
2. Mix them through your compost
Coffee grounds will break down into your compost quicker if they are mixed through. Coffee grounds are considered a green material because of its high nitrogen content. This means you need to make sure that there is plenty of brown material to mix through.
Brown materials include dry fall leaves, straw, hay or small bark chips. Use a garden fork to mix the ingredients together. You should only have a small amount of coffee grounds in the compost mix otherwise the mix won’t break down properly.
The general ratio for cold composting is 1/3 green material and 2/3 brown materials. Other green materials include green grass clippings and food scraps.
3. Allow the coffee grounds to break down for 6 months
It is important to allow coffee grounds to break down in your compost for around 6 months. This will give the coffee grounds to mix with the other ingredients and for any chemical residue to break down. Different coffee types can contain leftover chemicals depending on the roasting process and brewing method.
These chemicals can sometimes cause harm to your plants and soil. To prevent this from happening it is very important to let the coffee grounds break down. Bacteria will break down coffee grounds in the compost pile. This means that after 6 months it will be ready to add to your lemon tree.
Are coffee grounds good for lemon trees?
Coffee grounds are good for lemon trees once they have been broken down in your compost for 6 months. This will make sure that any chemicals leftover in the coffee are broken down and the nutrients will be made available for your lemon tree.
Coffee grounds are great for lemon tree because they contain a range of nutrients including nitrogen and calcium. These are key nutrients needed for healthy tree and fruit growth. Broken down coffee grounds can be added to your lemon tree by adding compost as a top dressing.
Another great way to gently feed your lemon tree is to make a liquid compost feed. To do this scoop a small amount of compost into your watering can and fill the rest with water. Add a dash of seaweed solution and water it on the roots of your lemon trees.
Make sure you take the end off your watering can so any larger pieces do not get stuck. You can water this mix onto your tree monthly.
Are coffee grounds good fertilizer for lemon trees?
Coffee grounds do contain some nutrients which are beneficial for your lemon tree including nitrogen and calcium. To make sure the lemon tree can absorb the nutrients it is a great idea to break the coffee grounds down before adding them to your tree.
The best way to do this is in a compost pile, compost bin or hot composting system. For more on this, check out my article here: Why does a compost heap get hot? + the secret ingredient
What is the best fertilizer for a lemon tree?
The best fertilizer for a lemon tree includes a mix of pelleted chicken manure, trace elements and iron chelates. Lemon trees use up a lot of nutrients in the process of growing and developing fruit.
My favorite method of fertilizing lemon trees is to give them pelleted chicken manure at the start of each season. Then give them iron chelates and trace elements at the start of spring. These can be bought in powdered or liquid form. Both need to be diluted into water and given to your tree.
Top dress your lemon tree with a compost mix made with coffee grounds at the start of spring. Use a rake and pull back any mulch on the soil surface. Layer 2-3 inches of compost on top of the root zone. Cover the compost with a layer of mulch to keep it and the plant roots moist.
Coffee Grounds for Lemon Trees | Summary
Lemon trees will benefit from the nutrients in coffee grounds. It is important to break them down in compost first to remove any leftover chemicals that could damage your lemon tree. Mix them through your compost pile with brown ingredients including straw, sugar cane mulch, fall leaves and pea straw.
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I am an accredited practicing dietitian, experienced gardener and a dedicated cook. I love writing and sharing my experience so you can learn from my successes and mistakes.