Moss in the right place can look good but in your lawn it is a no-no.
Whilst I am on an environmentally friendly kick I thought I would comment on Moss.
Mosses are bryophytes and there are over 10,000 species that grow from spores. Moss can grow on rocks, roof, lawns paths and many other places. Beware raking or removing live moss as you only spreads the spores.
Sphagnum moss is a group of several hundred mosses that can decay into peat over many decades and centuries. The sphagnum peat is the dead brown moss formed in boggy conditions that have now been exploited or over exploited for peat burning and garden purposes. Use peat substitutes to protect our old peat bog environments.
- Moss traps carbon and as peat locks up carbon gasses
- Sphagnum moss can hold 20 times its own weight in water.
- Moss is slow to rot as it contains carbolic acid and the boggy conditions where it grows remove oxygen. It also gets its only nutrient from rain water which adds to the acidity.
- Garden moss will not rot on a compost heap but you can bury moss under rhododendrons or acid lovers.
- Peat moss can be used as cover when growing mushrooms.
- Sphagnum moss is used to line hanging baskets because it holds water so well. Commercial collected moss may be damaging peat bogs so collect your own from the garden or buy from a sustainably farmer source.
- Moss prefers damp shady conditions and is often found growing on the north side of trees and walls as in this photo.
- Japanese gardeners grow mosses and revere their shape form and colour.
‘A passing fad for moss-collecting in the late 19th century led to the establishment of mosseries in many British and American gardens. The mossery is typically constructed out of slatted wood, with a flat roof, open to the north side (maintaining shade). Samples of moss were installed in the cracks between wood slats. The whole mossery would then be regularly moistened to maintain growth.’ Courtesy of Wikipedia
Grasses, Ferns, Mosses and Lichens of Great Britain and Ireland by Roger Phillips & Sheila Grant
Moss Gardening: Including Lichens, Liverworts and Other Miniatures by George Schenk