Posts Tagged ‘compost’

Are coffee grounds good for the garden?

July 4, 2018

One of the waste products from coffee shops are the spent coffee grounds.

What to do with the coffee grounds?

A few coffee shops, Surrey Hills Coffee is a good example, put outside the shop for passers by to collect for the garden. A pity more do not follow this example.

But what to do with in the garden?

Claimed to be a slug repellent, use as a mulch around plants, add to the compost heap.

Only one way to find out, pick up a bag.

I was quite surprised and not happy, to find in a zip lock plastic bag.

I assume because wet. Only not wet, a little moist maybe.

Cakes rather than loose grounds.

I have spread around a couple of tomato plants.

I will have to obtain more, as omitted runner beans.

To spread organic matter around plants not a good idea, best to compost.

But what impact on the compost heap? Will it kill it dead, act as an accelerant, or merely act as organic matter?

Half way down the garden I can now smell coffee.

The compost heap is now the site of two experiments, compostable coffee cups and coffee grounds.

As a slug repellent a nonstarter. This evening a slug was on the coffee grounds by the tomato plants. Though it did not live to tell the tale.

Rebuilding my compost heap

February 15, 2012
compost heap

compost heap

I raked the leaves off the grass, then decided I must rebuild my compost heap.

It was looking very sorry for itself. Low and flat and sprawling.

It is recommended that you periodically turn a compost heap. I never do. To me it seems making unnecessary work for oneself. It is true, the outside will not have fully rotted. This does not matter. When you come to open up and extract the compost, you simply add what has not fully rotted to the new compost heap.

I chopped away at the sides to make the heap of smaller diameter, forked and loosened the top, then with the addition of some household waste, piled everything back on top.

It has been subzero for two weeks or more. A few days ago the compost heap was ice solid. I expected nothing to be living inside. To my pleasant surprise loads of compost worms alive and well. I hope they did not mind too much being dumped out in the cold.

Whilst I was working, a Robin came to supervise what I was doing.

Compost heap

June 7, 2010
compost heap

compost heap

There is something deeply satisfying about a well-constructed compost heap.

Made up of garden and kitchen waste, it rots down to leave behind crumbling compost. Lift the top and it is a mass of wriggling red compost worms. Watered in hot dry weather with luke warm water keeps it working.

Also see

Seedy Sunday Brighton 2008
Sowing Seeds of Dissent
Seeds of Dissent
Do we need industrial agriculture?

Strange fungi on compost heap

April 26, 2010
Strange fungi on compost heap

compost heap fungi

Midday Sunday, a strange mould or fungi, bright yellow, almost chrome yellow, on top of a compost heap. An hour and a half later it had changed, the surface starting to brown. This was more noticeable mid-afternoon. By late afternoon, early evening, the surface was browned as though it was a loaf of bread just out of the oven. The fungi had appeared during the morning or overnight as it was not there the day before.

During the morning there had been heavy, fine rain. The previous two weeks or more, hot dry weather, though the compost heap had been watered with lukewarm water to stop it from drying out.

The compost heap consists of mainly garden weeds, autumn leaves, with vegetable scraps from the kitchen and scrunched up paper to provide fibre.

On at least one other occasion there has been a similar mould or fungi on the top of the compost heap, but not seen on any other compost heap.

What is it?