Tea leaves as fertilizer

tropicaldcguy(7)March 15, 2008

Hi everyone,

I know that people use coffee grounds as fertilizer, but what about the tea leaves from inside of tea bags? I don't drink that much coffee, but I go through tea like it's going out of style.

Can I open the bags and dump the leaves around my plants? Would that be good for them?


Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

For what it's worth, I use tea grounds on my potted plants with no adverse affects. Sometimes larvae grows in them though. My roses seem to love them.

    Bookmark   March 15, 2008 at 6:49PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

I let the tea bags ferment in water for a few days and then use them grounds and water on the plants. They don't seem to complain, ha ha!

    Bookmark   March 16, 2008 at 6:41PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

I also drink lots of tea, and use it as mulch, especially for acid-loving plants, though it hasn't stopped my gardenia from wasting away!

I don't expect it to have much nutrients, but it does alright as mulch. One note of caution, though, if you use it indoors, you may find it promotes the growth of those annoying, nasty, *%$&(&% fungus gnats!

P.S. If you switch to loose tea, you don't have to bother with cutting open the bags!


    Bookmark   March 17, 2008 at 10:38PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Which tea would work better..herbal or caffeine? Does it make a difference?
I save old milk containers filled with water.. I used to add used tea bags to the containers, but after thinking it over, (I use honey or sugar in tea) if honey would 1. harm a plant 2. attract mice..
Later, I found Dollar Stores sell 50 tea bags for 1.00..can't go wrong, right? bags are fresh, w/o honey or sugar.
Does anyone know which tea to use?
Would caffiene waken plants opposed to herbal which might relax/dormant them???? LOL

Jim, after pondering your post, perhaps allowing soil to dry more would have prevented those (&()(&)( gnats..LOL
Seriously, gnats are attracted to soils kept constantly moist/wet, and air is dry. Is it possible?
I've seen numerous plants packed with fungus gnats when moss was used atop soil. Especially sphagnum. (worked at a retail nursery)
I don't have an answer about tea, but now that spring is here, (officially not in reality) days are longer, I'd like to add/use something to perk up plants..be it something to help soil that lost nutrients to acidic turned neutral/alkaline. Plus a basic pick-er-up.

One last comment. The heading of this thread is Tea leaves as fertilizer....IMO, tea leaves wouldn't provide adequate if any NPK. Aside from possibly converting alk to acidic soil, fertilizers would be needed..Toni

    Bookmark   March 22, 2008 at 4:11PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Re: Fungus gnats! I hate them! Someone posted on here about if you want to get rid of them, put about a half inch of sand on top of the soil. It really works! I had gotten rid of mine over the course of a summer, then over the winter I forgot and brought in a pot of dirt from outside and stuck something in there. Now I have them back, but they don't breed in the sand, because it dries up so fast.

    Bookmark   March 27, 2008 at 5:11PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

tea, coffee, grass clippings, orange peels, apple cores --

they're all fertilizer, mulch, compost - nothing special about coffee grounds except they look more like soil so people don't find it unsightly to put them on their plants

it's all compost, mulch, organic fertilizer

    Bookmark   April 15, 2008 at 6:33AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

are used teabags safe to use as fertilizer/mulch?

    Bookmark   May 21, 2010 at 1:13PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
buyorsell888(Zone 8 Portland OR)

Yes, they are safe but as Toni says they aren't going to add much in the way of nutrients. They can have an acidifying effect on the soil which may or may not be what you want.

I do add mine to my compost bins but I don't dump anything "raw" on my plants.

    Bookmark   May 27, 2010 at 11:38AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

umm ya im going to probably be doing this for an expermient in school so any tips would be appreciated and websites to (reasearch sucks)

    Bookmark   February 16, 2011 at 12:05PM
Sign Up to comment
More Discussions
Your 2015 wish list
Okay. I'm sort of ashamed to admit that I've already...
Robert (zone 7a, Oklahoma)
Jasmine 'Grand Duke of Tuscany Supreme'.
I cannot honestly remember if it is just GDT or the...
Blooming in February! We are late!!!
It is almost spring, why hasn't a thread on Blooming...
Jasmine sambac 'MOO' growth habit
I've seen other posts about the scrufulous habit of...
Jasminum Sambac Grand Duke supreme
I have found Jasminum Sambac Grand Duke Supreme plants...
© 2015 Houzz Inc. Houzz® The new way to design your home™