Is Oatmeal Good for Plants? Using Oatmeal Water for Gardening

Oatmeal is very useful in the garden and can also be used to fertilize house plants. Not only does it provide an excellent source of nutrition for plants, but it has many other benefits as well. This article will answer the question, ‘is oatmeal good for plants?’ We’ll discuss several ways to use oatmeal when gardening. 

Is oatmeal good for plants?

Is Oatmeal Good for Plants?

When using oatmeal in your garden, choose the old-fashioned variety that are raw and needs to be slow-cooked. These contain high amounts of iron and other beneficial nutrients. 

It’s best to avoid pre-cooked, instant, or microwavable types of oats as these contain other ingredients such as flavoring, sugar, preservatives, and additives which won’t be beneficial to your plants and may even harm them. 

The right type of oatmeal can help aerate the soil and improve its structure, help retain moisture in the soil, and improves microbial activity. 

Oatmeal is also rich in iron, nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium—all essential minerals that plants need to stay healthy.

Using oatmeal water for plants

Is Oatmeal Good for Plants?

Oatmeal water can be used as an effective fertilizer as well. All you need to do is mix one cup of uncooked oats with five liters of water and leave the mixture to sit for a few days. 

Then, strain out the oats and water your plants with the oatmeal water. The nutrients in the oatmeal will help nourish your plants while also improving soil structure.

Oatmeal water can benefit a wide variety of plants and can be used in your vegetable garden, for house plants, and flower beds. 

Uses for oatmeal in the garden

Oatmeal is a great fertilizer but it also has many other uses: 


Oatmeal can also be used as mulch for your plants. By spreading a one-inch layer of uncooked oats around the base of your plants, you can help retain moisture in the soil and deter weeds from growing.


You can also add raw or cooked oatmeal to your compost heap. This will increase the quality of your compost and provide valuable nutrients for your garden.

Slug control

Although not scientifically proven, there are some reports that oatmeal can help to repel or even kill slugs and snails. It’s thought that if they eat the oatmeal, it will swell up inside them and kill them. Or they may detest the smell and stay away from your yard altogether. 

Can be used for skin conditions

If you have poison oak or poison ivy in your yard, these can cause a nasty rash. Brushing against the plant can cause painful blistering, which can be soothed using oatmeal water. 

Soak some oats in water, strain them and use the oat water to wash the affected area. Oat water can also be beneficial for healing sunburn or removing plant sap from your skin or clothing after working in the garden.

The disadvantages of oatmeal

While there are many benefits of using oatmeal, there are also a few downsides. 

  • Too much oatmeal can attract unwanted wildlife or insect pets to your garden
  • The birds may eat oatmeal that you are trying to use as a mulch or fertilizer
  • Overuse of oatmeal can result in the growth of mold
  • Wet oatmeal will soon become gooey, and if it touches the stem of your plant can cause them to rot


Oatmeal is an excellent addition to any garden or houseplant soil. It will provide nutrients for your plants, improve soil structure, and can be used as mulch or fertilizer.

You can also add oatmeal to your compost heap. With its many benefits, oatmeal can help keep your plants healthy and thriving.