Weeds in moss

mowmowgreen(z7 GA)July 27, 2005

Earlier this spring while out biking, I ran across an out-of-the-way creek back in the woods. Both sides of the creek bank were lined with thick, clean, emerald-green moss. A few days later, I harvested enough to plant around the foundation of my house. The moss is doing very well there, but it has since played host to a ton of different weeds. The moss at the creek may have had a few weeds growing up through it, but it was essentially a smooth carpet of moss. Is there any way to get rid of these weeds without hurting the moss? I really would like to capture that smooth, clean look that almost made me wreck my bike.

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triciae(Zone 7 Coastal SE CT)

I noticed nobody has responded to your questions so I thought I post a response. I hand weed my moss gardens...I find it to be a pleasant and enjoyable time. It's easiest if you do not let the weeds get large. I hold the moss down with one hand and gently pull the weed out with the other. Sometimes, for small weeds, I even use twissors. I use a whisk broom to clean up small, spruce needles, etc. My moss garden is only approx 150 s.f. so this approach is veasible. I'd also like to mention that harvesting wild moss is something I'd like to ask you to rethink. If everybody did as you soon there would be no more moss in those woodlands. That beautiful patch you ran across while biking is already scarred because of your harvest...and will not be so beautiful for the next person to enjoy. It takes a considerable amount of time for moss to thickly develop.

    Bookmark   July 29, 2005 at 5:36PM
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mowmowgreen(z7 GA)

Thanks for your response. As far as harvesting the moss, it's in a location that is being heavily developed with new subdivisions and townhomes. In a couple of years, the area will be completely clear cut and ruined. I actually thought I was doing the moss a favor.

    Bookmark   July 30, 2005 at 8:48AM
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judithjane(z7, NC)

I agree with everything posted by Tricia, but would like to add 2 thoughts on weed control. Moss grows cleanly in the deep woods because there are less weed seeds around and the soil is poor.

1.In the new location near a lawn, you need to control the weeds in the lawn to reduce the weeds in the moss. Grass usualy doesn't make seeds becuase of mowing, but the lawn weeds sure do. Also be care when reseeding the lawn in the Fall not to get seed in the moss that you'll have to pull out later.

2. Don't feed the moss which is adapted to poor soil. You're just helping the weeds.


    Bookmark   July 30, 2005 at 9:03AM
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I want to reinforce the other comments about wild collecting and hand pulling weeds. I am new to the Garden Forum, but not to moss gardening, having admired and tended moss patches for most of my 50 plus years. Part of the appeal of that beautiful patch of moss comes from the fact that it happened very slowly and quietly. I find hurrying the process along is usually self-defeating. For example, I recently trimmed all the weeds in my moss lawn with a weed eater. The clippings then had to be painstakingly removed and it is just easier to hand weed. Besides, all those noisy, smelly power tools totally defeat the peaceful place I want to cultivate.

This forum has helped me feel I am not crazy, as many friends seem to think. It's good to see so many replies to moss questions from other NC moss gardeners!

    Bookmark   August 2, 2005 at 1:07PM
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I made the mistake of feeding my plants that are too close to the moss. I scatter osmocote and the weeds grew very fast in the moss/Now I am pulling weeds and using the weed trimmer.

    Bookmark   August 7, 2005 at 10:01AM
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garyfla_gw(10 Florida)

I made an accidental discovery when I threw out some in out door carpet. The moss I have the fuzzy very green stuff loves it and of couse weed can't take root.
When i get my garden straightened out Though I'd try some peacock moss in it as weeds quickly wide ir out for me.
I know ,I know it's not really a moss lol

    Bookmark   August 8, 2005 at 3:07AM
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Mowmow, I'm glad you were able to save some of the moss before it was bulldozed. Please let us see a picture soon.

Gary, I'm on the hunt for indoor-outdoor carpet. I wasn't able to get in my yard for a week or so and a many-leafed weed has invaded BIG TIME! Yesterday I took a little stool and a bucket out and pulled weeds...when I came upstairs on the deck and looked over the railing I couldn't even tell where I'd been working. What a bummer. I do feed my moss sometimes with stale watered down beer (DH says they like cheap beer.LOL I tried to talk the guys into drinking 12 oz and leaving the moss 4 oz out of each can. Yeah, right!)

If anyone has an easier way to get weeds out, please let us know. These little weeds look like they have seeds on the back. OHHHHH NOOOOOO!

    Bookmark   August 19, 2005 at 7:50PM
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judithjane(z7, NC)

If your many leafed weed is dichondra, you have my sympanthy. It kills moss or grass equally and is impossible to weed. This year is my first time combating a weed I can't control. I'm letting the lawn service fight it.
For regular weeds, don't give up. As your moss gets thicker with age, there are fewer weeds to pull.
Best of luck......jjane

    Bookmark   August 20, 2005 at 8:56AM
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