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Thread: Coffee Grounds as Medium?

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    Coffee Grounds as Medium?

    I'm just wondering if i can use coffee grounds (the soil-like things that you get from grinding coffee beans) as medium for my Nepenthes plants? I read a lot of testimonials about the wonders of coffee (drink) as fertilizers for Neps but I've never read of using the grounds as medium. What say you, friends?

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    LeafKirby's Avatar
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    Why would you even try that? Lol, I have no idea.
    Formerly known as WaterKirby.

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    Edward Rokosauros's Avatar
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    That'd be like planting a nepenthes with fertilizer....IMO, I wouldn't do it.
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    Quote Originally Posted by LeafKirby View Post
    Why would you even try that? Lol, I have no idea.
    Well, I have a lot of it.

    ---------- Post added at 10:47 PM ---------- Previous post was at 10:44 PM ----------

    Quote Originally Posted by Rokosauros View Post
    That'd be like planting a nepenthes with fertilizer....IMO, I wouldn't do it.
    I was thinking of mixing it with coco cubes, and an alternative to peat cause it looks like peat.

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    villosaholic Heli's Avatar
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    I wouldnt do it. It would probably burn the roots.

    ---------- Post added at 10:02 AM ---------- Previous post was at 10:01 AM ----------

    and just because it looks like peat doesnt mean it acts like peat.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Heli View Post
    I wouldnt do it. It would probably burn the roots.

    ---------- Post added at 10:02 AM ---------- Previous post was at 10:01 AM ----------

    and just because it looks like peat doesnt mean it acts like peat.
    Alright, thank you.

    Has anyone here tried it?

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    Whimgrinder's Avatar
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    I would expect the acidity would be extreme and destroy the root system in a short time. You have to remember that coffee, applied as a "fertilizer" to Nepenthes is done sparingly, infrequently, and as a very dilute solution. Planting directly in a medium containing a significant portion of coffee grounds would likely be quite toxic. However, if you can determine the actual acidity (use a meter!) of the proposed mix, and determine the conductivity of the runoff (it must be under 24 microsiemens) then you just might be able to engineer a suitable mix. I would expect, however, that the percentage of coffee grounds used would have to be low (under 20%, or even far less) and you would have to wash the grounds repeatedly in rainwater/RO water before use. (Just like you have to "wash" peat before using it in a Sarracenia mix: right out of the bag, it contains too much salt)

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    Hi Whimgrinder, I intended to use it sparingly, like what you said. I was thinking of just adding a small amount of used coffee grounds to coco cubes.

    And I appreciate your insight about using meters. I will do it to check the viability of using coffee grounds as a medium. I might also experiment on this and I'll post the results after a couple of months.

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