Are Coffee Grounds A Good Fertilizer For Succulents?

Coffee doesn't just give you an energy boost, it can help to give your plants a boost too! 

Coffee contains so many vital nutrients and minerals that some plants, like the succulent plant, can really benefit from it.

However, you need to use the coffee grounds the right way or you can actually negatively impact the soil health around your succulent. 

In this guide we'll show you how to use coffee grounds for succulents to maximize plant growth .

Succulents are a group of plants that store water within their leaves.[1]

In comparison to other plants, succulents tend to have leaves that are thick and fleshy.

They generally thrive in dry climates rather than humid climates. 

While they do require proper watering, succulents can endure extended periods of drought by relying on the stored water and nutrients in their leaves.  

In terms of fertilizers, succulents generally don’t need a lot of fertilizing.

If you were to use one, however, succulents don’t need a specific blend, so a highly diluted all-purpose fertilizer would do the trick.  

Women holding a succulent plant

Are Coffee Grounds Actually Good For Succulents?

Yes, coffee grounds are good for succulents because they like slightly acidic soil and coffee grounds provide high mineral amounts. 

All in all, coffee grounds can be a great fertilizer for succulents and can help provide them with all the essential nutrients they need.

This will help them get their full dark green appearance, with thick leaves, and a broad and fleshy stem.  

You just have to make sure you use coffee grounds correctly when you're fertilizing (more on that in a minute). 

What About Indoor Succulents?

Succulents aren't just outdoor plants, and it's popular to have a potted snake plant or jade plant in your home.

Brewed coffee ground leftovers generally aren't as good for indoor potted plants, but indoor potted succulents will benefit from compost coffee grounds

However, you need to make sure the used coffee grounds are diluted before you apply them to your snake plant, jade plant, or other indoor plants, or it could make the potting soil too acidic. 

Mixing coffee grounds with water should give you a liquid coffee fertilizer which helps to support their growth without causing soil contamination.

Key Benefits Of Using Coffee Grounds For Succulents 

Wondering what the benefits of using coffee grounds for succulents are?  

1. Boost Soil Fertility  

By using coffee grounds as a fertilizer, it will help to release nutrients like nitrogen while also enhancing the soil’s acidity. This, in turn, will help with boosting soil fertility in the long run. 

2. Attract Beneficial Microbes  

Using coffee grounds as a fertilizer can help with attracting microbes along and worms. These beneficial microbes and worms will create a compost tea, which boosts soil fertility as they help to break down and eventually convert organic waste into nutrients.  

3. Prevent Harm To Succulents 

Coffee grounds can also help with absorbing heavy metals that are in the soil - preventing harm to the plant.

The right amount of coffee grounds can even help to reduce plant diseases such as fungus and keep weeds and pests away.  

4. Grow Healthier  

Coffee grounds help to retain water, so you won't have to water your succulents as often.

Since coffee grounds are also a natural fertilizer, there’s less of a risk of damaging your succulents (in comparison to chemical fertilizers).  

succulents growing

How To Add Coffee Grounds To Succulent Soil (Tips For Using) 

New to adding coffee grounds to succulent soil? Here’s a detailed guide to get you started:  

1. Don't dump the coffee grounds onto the plant

Instead, add the brewed or unbrewed coffee grounds to the soil around the plant.

Ideally, you would want to mix the coffee grounds with your compost pile, as it’s better to mix it with other organic materials rather than applying it directly on the soil alone. 

Then, water lightly to ensure that the compost pile well together.  

2. Use Small Amounts Of Coffee Grounds For A Potted Plant 

If you have potted succulents, you should be only using small amounts of coffee grounds that have been diluted in water.  

To start, you can add coffee grounds to your succulent’s soil every two weeks. After some time, you can add the organic material to the indoor plants every four to six weeks during the growing season.  

Remember, don't add unbrewed coffee grounds for indoor succulents, and don't use cold brewed coffee (it has too much caffeine). 

3. Stick To The Watering Routine 

Succulents generally don’t need to be watered often. Even if you use coffee grounds, you can stick to your usual watering routine. 

4. Check The Garden Soil pH

Remember to check your succulent’s soil to ensure that it’s not of an overly high acidity level, especially for potted plants.

If you’re not sure, you can always consider investing in a testing kit to check the acidity level of the soil.  

Man holding soil from garden

Can Too Many Coffee Grounds Harm Succulents?

Using brewed coffee grounds can help plant growth by giving you mildly acidic soil, and giving plants access to higher nitrogen levels. 

However, if you use too many used coffee grounds you can harm your succulents

There's a fine balance with soil and you don't want to mess with the natural environment too much. If you're applying a lot of coffee grounds directly to the soil then it can change the soil pH and nitrogen levels too much as the coffee grounds break down.

This can cause nitrogen toxicity which can stop succulent growers and other garden plants from thriving. 

Try not to use too many coffee grounds and be careful if you're using a chemical fertilizer along with it, as this can lead to slightly more acidic soil than the plants need.[2]

Common Succulent & Coffee Ground Questions

Which succulent plants do not like coffee grounds? 

Almost all succulents like coffee grounds, as succulents tend to thrive in soil that’s just slightly acidic. Just make sure that you’re using the right amount of coffee grounds and providing your succulent with a suitable growing environment.  

Can you make your own succulent soil? 

Yes, you can. The best mixing ratio for your own succulent soil is to use two parts sand, two parts gardening soil, and one part of either perlite or pumice. The perlite or pumice helps with overall aeration and drainage.  

Where should I plant succulents?  

Almost all succulents thrive in sunny spots or in bright light. This might not, however, apply to all succulents, so it’s worth doing the necessary research to ensure that your succulents are thriving in the best growing conditions.

If you’d like, you can even grow succulents in a coffee mug, just as long as they’re placed in an area with plenty of sun.  


So, are coffee grounds good for succulents? Yes, absolutely, as long as you’re doing it properly. 

Take the type of succulents and how they’re planted into consideration. You should also make sure that you’re monitoring growing conditions and the acidity of the soil.  




Karmy Widjaja

Karmy Widjaja

Karmy grew up in Singapore before heading to wintry Boston to pursue a Hospitality Administration degree. It was there that she developed an interest in coffee - especially hot lattes which helped get her through the winter. In her later years, Karmy moved to Melbourne, fully immersing herself in the world of coffee, beans, and the roasting process. Now, Karmy resides in Perth where she's always on the hunt for the next best coffee.

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