Get on Top of Moss
You’re probably starting to spend less and less time in your garden. If you have looked at your lawn though you may have noticed the presence of moss. Moss is quite a common problem in many lawns, so we’re going to find out what it is, how you can recognise it and what you can do about it.
Have you got moss?
Moss is one of the simplest lawn problems to identify. You will notice patches of loose tufts of yellowish-green or green plants, which can look like very small ferns and are often densely matted. What you won’t see where moss has taken hold is much grass.
When you walk on mossy areas of your lawn, you may notice that it feels ‘spongy’ under foot, and the area is frequently uneven in colour.
What causes moss?
There are a variety of things that may cause moss to grow in lawns. These range from factors such as how you care for your lawn to things like the climate. While not everything is within your control, understanding why you may have a problem with moss can help you to minimise it.
Some common causes include:-
- Poor drainage – this is one of the most common causes of moss in lawns, and often occurs when soil is compacted. If drainage is poor, water pools on the surface of lawn, creating conditions that are ideal for the growth of moss
- Close mowing – if grass is cut too short it can make it weak, which in turn provides the opportunity for moss to grow in its place. If you notice bare patches in the autumn, it is likely that moss may prove to be a problem over winter.
- Shaded lawns – if your lawn is completely or partially in shade, you may find that you have an increased problem with moss. This is the reason that you often notice more moss in your lawn as the days get shorter and your lawn receives less sunshine.
- Worn areas – whether it’s due to children playing on the lawn, or because people walk over an area, a worn area of lawn will provide suitable conditions for moss to grow.
- Acidic soil – lawns in areas where the soil is acidic tend to be more prone to moss.
- Nutrient deficient lawns – lawns that aren’t fed regularly with the appropriate fertiliser will have weaker growing grass, which can make it easier for moss to thrive.
- Failure to remove thatch or leaves – a covering of thatch, or indeed autumn leaves, on your lawn can damage the health of your lawn, again leading to an increase in the amount of moss present.
- General neglect – a lawn that isn’t looked after is a lawn that will be more likely to suffer from all kinds of problems, including moss.
What can you do?
The best thing is to prevent moss from occurring the first place by addressing some of the causes. Some of these may be the easier than others. If, for example your lawn is shaded by buildings or other permanent structures there is little you can do, however you can minimise shade from trees or hedges by keeping them well-pruned, and even removing them if necessary.
Many of the causes of moss result from poor maintenance of your lawn, such as failing to feed the lawn, not carrying out treatments such as scarification to remove that or mowing the grass too short. Setting up a year-round lawn treatment plan with All Green Lawn Treatments is one of the best ways to keep you lawn healthy and reduce the risk of moss growing. Our plans can include the application of fertiliser, to help you grass grow with strength, and we can carry out aeration in order to reduce soil compaction and improve drainage.
Of course if moss has already taken a hold of your lawn, contact us for a free lawn analysis, when we will be able to suggest a remedial plan to treat the existing moss.