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Spanish moss growing in the UK

Posted by martyp (My Page) on
Sat, Jun 30, 12 at 11:11

Hi all,
I love Spanish Moss and have been trying to get it to grow well the last few years. I have decided to try it in the back garden here in the UK during the summer. I understand in the wild it likes to grow on bald cypress and southern live oak trees which aren't readily available in the UK. I thought about using a dead branch of English oak (Quercus sp) instead as maybe the plant could get some nutrients from the run off like it might get in the wild?
I don't have a greenhouse or conservatory so normally just grow it in my living room and mist it frequently but would like it to grow as much as possible. I've also tried sumbersing it briefly in a bucket of water and it comes out green then leave it to dry off.
Has anyone got any good hints and tips for growing in the UK? Would the Oak tree branch be worth trying?

Many thanks

Follow-Up Postings:

RE: Spanish moss growing in the UK

I grow SM here in the Fla. Keys where it does not grow natively. It will grow on most any tree that it is placed on, in fact almost any structure that will support it, so I don't know that putting yours on an oak branch is needed. Still I give you kudos for growing it so far from it's natural home.
Good luck, Scott

RE: Spanish moss growing in the UK

Hi Matyp,

I grow it here in Australia OK and like Scott says, it doesn't seem to matter what type of tree I grow it on. It seems to be the hardiest Tillandsia going and I even made a "wall" of it by threading small pieces through nylon bird netting on the side of a vege garden. It soon grew to make a rather dense wall of it which I can just pull handfulls from to give to friends.

I never water mine at all and the only water it gets is from natural rain or dew. I found when I did water it in the early stages it grew much slower than it does now and it seems to thrive on neglect.

All the best, Nev.

RE: Spanish moss growing in the UK

OMG I am visiting from the Florida Gardening forum and I got such a laugh out of this post! This stuff grows wild all over the south and I avoid it like the plague because it harbors CHIGGERS!!!! I took my son on a school outing to Brooker Creek a few months ago and got chiggers...I was miserable for a week! It's so funny to me how hard we floridians try to grow english roses and now I see people in englad growing spanish moss! LOL!!! The grass is always greener......

Here is a link that might be useful: Spanish Moss and Chiggers

RE: Spanish moss growing in the UK

I wish I could send you some of ours. I pulled armloads and armloads out of my mother's holly and crape myrtle trees yesterday. Filled a large garbage can with it. It is very pretty, but will choke out large sections of a tree when it covers the leaves and photosynthesis cannot occur. Many dead branches came down with the heavy, heavy Spanish moss.

Carol in Jacksonville

RE: Spanish moss growing in the UK

Hi Marty,

Did you ever grow your Spanish moss?


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