From the mug to the garden 
Photo by Refracted Moments

OK, pop quiz: What does every office have?

Answer: A coffee pot. Truly, have you ever been to a place of business that didn’t smell just a little like a cup of java. And those of you who work from home probably have a coffeemaker in the kitchen.

Even a small business most likely goes through three to five pots of coffee each day – that’s at least 15 pots of coffee each work week. And where do the coffee grounds probably end up: in the garbage can.

In an effort to make your office – whether it has 200 employees or 2 – a little greener, give those used coffee grounds a new mission. Coffee grounds are great plant food, can be used as mulch and are a perfect addition to your compost pile.

Here are some great tips on how to use coffee grounds.

By reusing coffee grounds, you’re cutting down on office waste and giving Mother Nature a helping hand.

The key to this idea is making it easy for your employees to get involved.

• Save the bags the coffee came in and dump the grounds (filters can be used in a compost pile too) back into those bags. Your employees can take them home and use them in their gardens or in their own compost piles.

• If you have a landscape crew, talk with it about how you can use the coffee grounds in the flowerbed or on the lawn.

• Contact your local horticulture group or garden club – they just might be willing to come by your office once a week and pick up your grounds.

Encourage your employees to compost at home. According to the EPA, yard trimmings and food waste together account for 24 percent of the U.S. municipal solid waste stream. That’s a lot of trash that could be put to a better use. Check out this EPA site on how to start composting.

So, fire up the coffee pot, but think twice before dumping the grounds.

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