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by Kit K Leung
on July 19, 2019 at 9:49 AM
Thanks for posting this. residual caffeine anything to be worried about? That is, does some caffeine remain in the used coffee grounds to be later leached into soils and taken up by plants and potentially the edible parts of the plant - leaves, roots, fruit? Or does the composting process also break down caffeine into less "active" components over time?
by Michele Martinez
on July 19, 2019 at 11:01 AM
Hi, Kit. that's a great question! Our author Pam Snethen used "Gardening Know How" as a reference. I looked there for info on caffeine. They say that if you're composting grounds, the caffeine dissipates, but if you're using grounds directly in the soil, the caffeine can affect things planted in that same soil. First, it can speed the growth, then it can retard plant growth (sounds like "coffee rush" in us!). Apparently the caffeine in coffee plants serves to deter the growth of other plants around the coffee bush by littering the ground with caffeine-rich leaves. Nature is amazing! Here's the reference:
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