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Do You Hate Mowing the Lawn?

Or in contrast, do you have patches in the yard that look like this?

Do You Hate Mowing the Lawn?

Image source: Jeff Covey on Flickr

If plagued by either landscaping issue, there may be a solution you haven’t thought of.

Moss.

Do You Hate Mowing the Lawn?

Image source: xiffy on Flickr

Moss is actually the oldest known terrestrial plant that is still living.

We have featured some of the interesting sides of moss – from being used as green graffiti to its energy creating capabilities, and it is also perfect for a soft, no hassle turf that is vibrant most of the year. This natural outdoor carpet may be loathed by some, but planting lawn moss is actually an environmentally logical landscaping technique that many whose yards fall in the above categories opt for.

There are thousands of varieties of mosses that grow in many different conditions around the world. There are 2 core types of mosses, which are acrocarpous and pleurocarpous. Acrocarps need a little drying out time in order to prevent rotting. Pleurocarps like mostly moist conditions and can tolerate constant moisture. Some styles of mosses that are relatively simple to start in a lawn are generally known as sheet, cushion, haircap and rockcap mosses.

Lawns that do not produce sufficient grass or grass that does not grow well, typically can work successfully with moss. Moss is a fairly carefree option to plant, and can be raised in numerous types of soil. It will even grow and spread in poorer quality soil and can pop up where grass will not grow. Most varieties like shade, moist earth and a temperature of at least above freezing to begin growth, though moss can grow in a variety of climates.

To start a moss lawn it is best to begin with a clean, raked bare patch. Mosses gather nutrients from the air so they need room to breathe and expand for best results, though they are notorious for creeping up between spaces. It can be planted by picking up a bunch and laying it down on soil or compost. Though more advanced, the fragmentation method can be done by making a moss milkshake and pouring it over prepared soil.

Though moss does spread, in order to create an entire moss lawn or a larger patch it will initially need to be lightly watered almost daily in dry conditions to promote growth. After established, when it looks dry it can be spruced up with light sprinkling or misting. It also may take a bit of time to fully rid other grasses and weeds from the area and allow the moss to take over.

Native types of moss can pop up on its own but spores, kits and starter patches can be purchased from landscape retailers, or it can be picked wild in allowed areas. However, do not over-pick so the spot that it is gathered from so it can regrow.

Moss is actually good for landscaping in that can reduce land erosion as it helps draw up moisture. Lush, healthy moss is a great natural air filter and works as an efficient carbon offsetter.  Also, since it doesn’t require constant watering it uses only a portion of the water that is needed for typical grass filled lawns.

If you want to soften the step in your landscape without much upkeep, moss may be your new best friend.

Watch one professional horticulturist’s story of how he eliminated grass from his lawn decades ago and currently has at least 25 varying species of moss as outdoor scenery instead, courtesy of Science Friday.

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