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Coffee Chaff

  • Subject: [cg] Coffee Chaff
  • From: "Jon Rowley" rowley@nwlink.com
  • Date: Mon, 5 May 2003 11:51:43 -0700

I am wondering if any of you have experience with using coffee chaff as
mulch in your gardens.

A fair trade organic coffee roaster (www.peacecoffee.com) just moved
into my office building and I have access to an ongoing supply of burlap
and coffee chaff.

I have been spreading the word about the chaff and burlap among
community gardeners.  Gardeners are interested, but are wary of putting
coffee chaff in their gardens without knowing what affect it will have.

Any experiences you can share would be helpful.  I'll take creative
suggestions for using burlap as well.

Corrie Zoll
I've used coffee chaff both in mulches and compost. Coffee chaff is a terrific mulch material but I'd recommend mixing it with other materials otherwise it can,  when wet,  form an impervious mat or, if dry, blow away.  It is very light and fluffy.  It is also flammable.  I once had to hose down a fire in a garden caused by a live cigarette butt carelessly thrown into a rather deep coffee chaff mulch. 
When you work with coffee chaff  as a mulch material you get the hang of it.  A coffee chaff mulch is  great for suppressing weeds around tomato plants and such. A  coffee roaster will also have coffee bean floor sweepings which can be used as mulch as well as coffee grounds.
For a good use of burlap, check out info on the "Interbay Mulch" http://faq.gardenweb.com/faq/lists/soil/2000081841014638.html
Good tilth,
Jon Rowley
Interbay P-Patch

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