Getting Rid Of Moss In Your Lawn With Chemicals
The two most common ingredients in moss-killing chemicals are iron sulfate and glyphosate. Iron sulfate will start damaging moss in a matter of hours and effectively kill it within two days. This ingredient is commonly found in fertilizers and wont harm your lawns grass.
Glyphosate, on the other hand, is non-selective and will kill both the moss and grass it comes into contact with.
Killing Moss Naturally With Baking Soda Easiest Way
The easiest and efficient way of getting rid of moss is with plain old baking soda. This method is great for tackling smaller patches of moss or even crabgrass, and since its completely natural, it wont hurt the environment or your garden plants, soil, or water.
Before getting started, it is recommended that you wear a pair of gloves when making the baking soda and water mixture to kill moss naturally. The best time to apply this natural moss killing solution is in the afternoon when the grass is dry.
You can make the mixture as potent as you want depending on the density or quantity of moss, but the minimum is one tablespoon baking soda to one gallon of water. For small patches of moss, its best to start off with three tablespoons baking soda to one quart of water.
If youre dealing with large patches of moss, then you will have to step it up a few notches with eight tablespoons of baking soda to one quart water, and sprinkle some baking soda over the affected area to enhance its effectiveness. Check in a day or two, and repeat the process with higher mixture potency or rake and discard the dead moss appropriately.
This is a temporary solution, and you will have to do it frequently, somewhere between two and three times a week. If youre wondering how baking soda kills moss, it increases the pH to a level that is inhospitable to moss.
Moss In Lawns Now Youre Prepared
As the owner of LawnChick.com, Im obviously all about grass, and if you want to get rid of moss in a lawn or yard, the tips Ive provided in this article will help you do just that.
But if youre open to it, and are eco-conscious, there are certainly benefits from leaving moss in your yard, and even embracing moss and transitioning part or all of your yard to a moss lawn.
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Ways To Kill Moss On Your Lawn
Traditional ways of eliminating moss include spreading iron sulfate moss killer. You can also get rid of moss in your lawn by making it less acidic by adding lime to the soil. Or, you can use good old sweat equity and rake out the living moss from your lawn. But the simplest, safest method is to use dish soap. It’s easy to learn how to kill moss with this recipe that costs pennies to whip up. Just follow these three steps.
For small patches, mix in a garden hand sprayer 2 ounces of dish soap and 1 gallon of water. Use gentle liquid dish soap, such as blue Dawn, which you’ll find in most grocery stores. For larger areas, use 4 ounces of dish soap in 2 gallons of water for every 1,000 square feet of lawn.
Spray the mixture on the patches of moss. Holding the spray nozzle a couple of inches from the target area, drench the moss with the solution. Make sure not to spray the grass, as the solution can also kill healthy grass.
The patches of moss will turn orange or brown in 24 hours and eventually dry up. Dig up the dead moss. The dish detergent does not necessarily kill moss at the roots, so remove as much of the moss as possible. The surrounding grass will begin to grow over the patches.
After raking up the dead moss, take it to an isolated area. Don’t compost it or the moss spores could spread back into your lawn. Wait to re-seed bare areas left by the dead moss, as the liquid soap can impede germination. Top the new grass seed with new, loose soil that’s free of moss spores.
Solving Moss Problems In Lawns
Moss invasions such as this call for adjustments in lawn growing conditions.
Moss invading lawns is a common problem. Moss thriving in lawns signals that grass is weak and has thinned for some reason, allowing the moss to take over. There are many potential causes, including excessive shade, compacted soils, poorly drained soils, low soil fertility, high or low soil pH, and poor air circulation. Poor lawn care practices are another source of moss problems. General lack of care, including irregular mowing and little or no fertilizer applications are common problems leading to poor turf growth.
Adding limestone is a common “remedy” mentioned for moss control, but is not suggested unless a soil test has shown the pH needs to be raised. Many soils in northern Illinois have high pH values adding limestone will make this pH go even higher, adding to the lawn’s problem. Ferrous ammonium sulfate or ferric sulfate can be used to control moss to some extent. The moss will temporarily burn away, but tends to return fairly quickly. Raking out moss is another option usually followed by reseeding.
Modifying site conditions to favor lawn grasses and discourage moss is a suggested way to manage the problem. Too much shade for acceptable grass growth is a common underlying cause for moss invasion. Pruning trees and shrubs to improve air circulation and light penetration is a good starting point. Evaluate the site to make sure the proper grass for the conditions is being used.
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Preventing Moss From Growing On Your Lawn
Now that we have raked out all the moss we can, lets talk a little bit about preventing the moss from coming back. While you may not be able to do much, there are some things to consider and work towards.
Remember a few things. Moss loves dark and damp areas. So, sun and dry ground will help prevent growth.
What Can I Do To Get Rid Of The Moss In My Lawn
If youre plagued by persistent moss in your yard, you are not alone. Mosses may be primitive and simple plants, but they thrive when given the right growing conditions. Although there are chemical products available on the market for moss removal, the moss will come back unless you change the growing conditions in your yard.
Several environmental and soil conditions tend to encourage moss growth in your yard. One of the most common problems is poorly drained and consistently wet soils. Compacted soils are also a boon for moss. Steps must be taken to improve both soil drainage and aeration.
You may also want to get your soil tested because moss thrives in soil more acidic than you want for your turf grass, which requires a pH closer to neutral . A soil test may also reveal nutrient deficiencies, which may hamper the ability of your grass to out-compete the moss.
Another factor that affects moss is available sunlight. Moss is much more likely to thrive in deep shade than in bright sunlight. Although removing trees will likely solve many issues, this is hardly a practical solution for most homeowners. However, pruning landscape trees to allow more light to reach the ground is a viable option. Removing lower limbs and/or thinning the canopy should be to the benefit of both the tree and the lawn beneath.
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How To Repair Your Lawn
Its important to understand and consider that if you kill the moss in your lawn you could be left with brown and bare looking patches. You will need to re-seed your lawn with lawn seed to bring it back to life. It is essential that you grow new healthy grass over these patches to avoid them being overgrown by moss again.
If your lawn has suffered from a high infestation of moss, use Gro-Sure Smart Patch spreader to fill in any bare patches. Its aqua gel technology and water retaining granules locks in nutrients and water for guaranteed germination results.
For more information, read our article on how to repair patches in your lawn.
Top Recommended Lawn Care Provider
TruGreen does not specifically treat moss, but it handles a variety of practices that will decrease your chances of getting moss in the first place, like proper aeration and fertilization. The lawn care company offers five annual programs and a variety of a la carte services in every state except for Alaska. To get a free quote, call 866-817-2287 or fill out this easy form.
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Controlling Existing Lawn Moss
The best time to treat moss is when it’s actively growing. That typically happens during the fall rains, warm winter rains and early spring. Lawn mosses don’t need much light or nutrition to live, but moisture is critical both in its surroundings and in the plant itself.
Moss control products based on iron and naturally occurring iron substances, such as ferrous sulfate, are highly effective at killing lawn moss by drawing out moisture so mosses dry up, turn black and die. The Lilly Miller Moss Out! line of moss controls offers several iron-based products to kill lawn moss quickly and benefit your lawn:
Always follow product label instructions closely, and only use these products on lawns. Iron-based moss controls naturally cause rustlike stains, which can affect sidewalks and other hard surfaces.
Effective iron-based products kill moss and improve your lawn at same time.
Long Term Moss Control
Create the ideal growing conditions for your grass. Your soil should be light, free draining, fertile and warm.
- Ensure that you never remove more than 1/3 of grass in any one cut
- Apply nitrogen based fertiliser every month between April & July
- Aerate your lawn each year in either Spring or Autumn
- If your soil is consistently wet and / or is slow to drain after a rain shower then you should consider installing land drains
- Your lawn should never become water logged
- Surface water should drain away at a rate of 1 inch per hour
- You can do a ‘matchstick’ test to determine soil compaction – you should be able to push a matchstick into your soil using only your thumb
- Choose the right lawn seed for you. If your lawn is going to get excessive use and could have kids playing football on it and BBQ’s & picnics are a common event, then you should choose a hard wearing grass such as a grade 3 grass, as what would be used on a football pitch. Grade 1 is more suited to manicured lawns and those which will receive little foot traffic
- Warm soils mean better grass growth. Grass will grow when the soil temperatures reach 6 degrees. But Optimum growth is reached between 18 & 22 Degrees
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How To Kill Moss
Once you have identified and corrected the problem that was causing the grass to die in the first place, you can start the process of killing the moss and replanting the grass.
Knowing how to kill green moss is not as important as how to have a healthy lawn. Remember, when you kill moss in the lawn, you will only be successful if you take steps to ensure that your lawn is healthy. Without correcting your lawns problems, you will only find yourself ridding your lawn of moss again.
Note: Any recommendations pertaining to the use of chemicals are for informational purposes only. Chemical control should only be used as a last resort, as organic approaches are safer and more environmentally friendly.
Getting Rid Of Moss In Lawn & Yards
Unfortunately, once moss establishes itself in your yard, its difficult to remove.
The easiest solution to getting rid of moss is hiring a professional to do the leg work for you. That said, removing moss is more time consuming than strenuous, and it can be done by yourself at home.
Moss is unique among unwanted lawn plants.
Standard treatments, like herbicides which you may use to remove standard lawn weeds, dont kill moss.
Moss removal is similar to thatch removal. You either rake it with an iron rake to remove existing moss or use a lawn mower with a dethatching blade attached.
A dethatching blade needs to be low enough to the ground to barely touch the surface of the lawn. After the moss is removed, mow the grass short, almost to bare soil, to prepare it for applying moss control products.
Moss control dries out the moss and is best applied when moss is still growing early in spring, or during fall and winter.
Moss is loose in the soil while it grows, so it is most easily removed. These products typically contain fatty acids or ferrous sulfates, which are particularly good at drying moss out.
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How To Kill Moss In Lawn By Increasing Soil Fertility
Another important aspect of your lawn to test is the nutrients in the soil. Fertilizing the earth is just as important as maintaining the pH levels and also makes a massive difference in precisely what is turning your green lawn green. A different test will tell you what nutrients your soil still needs to perform at its best.
Once youve selected the right lawn fertilizer for your grass, ensure you begin fertilizing your lawn at the appropriate time each year. This time is usually in early spring, though it varies by region and types of grass. Doing this will prevent issues in the future, once youve healed those small patches of missing grass first.
How To Kill Lawn Moss And Keep It Gone
Controlling moss can seem like an uphill battle once it gets established in your lawn, but effective control may be simpler than you think. Reclaiming your lawn involves dealing with existing lawn moss and correcting the conditions that invite it to grow.
To remove lawn moss from your yard and enjoy thick, green grass, follow these basics:
- Understanding Lawn Moss
- Preventing Future Lawn Moss
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Moss Killer Or Iron Sulphate
Youre going to have to kill the moss!
Applying a moss killer, or Ferrous Sulphate will kill the moss and turn it black.
I recommend you choose a water-soluble moss killer like Pro-Kleen. Granular products usually come as a feed, weed, and moss killer. Theyre good for keeping moss at bay but as a dedicated moss killer, theyre pretty useless.
Your lawn will look horrible for a little while but itll thank you for it when the moss is gone.
Why You Need To Care For Your Lawn Over The Winter
The climate we experience in the British Isles means that grass rarely stops growing for any length of time. There are exceptions of course, as in the past two Winters , and there are vast differences depending on where you are situated geographically, but, on the whole, your lawn will require at least a few trims over the Winter months.
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Keeping Moss At Bay In The Long Term
Aerate your lawn
Moss growth is usually a symptom of compacted, poorly aerated soil. To fully alleviate moss in the long term it is advisable to regularly aerate your lawn paying particular attention to the areas it affects most.
Test your soils acidity levels
Test your soils pH level, if it is below 6 it is acidic. Moss often sneaks in when your soil becomes to acidic and grass nutrients are low. Spreading agricultural lime will control the acidity of your soil.
Let the light shine
Your lawn could well be restricted by the amount of shaded grass areas. Grass struggles to grow in areas of little sunlight whilst moss will thrive. Try to cut back large bushes or overhanging trees which are blocking the sun from shining on your grass. If this is not possible consider planting flowers and other plants that thrive in shaded areas to prevent moss from growing instead.
Watering your lawn
Moss loves moisture so water your lawn with care and avoid flooding the lawn. Try to avoid watering your lawn at night as it is cooler and the moisture may sit on the soil. If your lawn is naturally moist you should regularly aerate.
The Ecological Benefits Of Moss
There are many reasons to grow a moss garden or moss lawn.
It lowers your weekly work requirements since moss lawns dont need to be mowed and are simpler to attend to. However, the reduction in work for you is also a benefit to the environment, since the environment also doesnt want you mowing your lawn every week.
Lawn mowers are notoriously bad carbon emitters. One hour of lawn mowing releases air pollution equivalent to letting 40 cars idle for the same amount of time.
If cutting your carbon footprint is something you care about, a moss lawn may be the solution for you.
Grass lawns are costly for the environment. While already grown grass removes CO2 from the atmosphere, it doesnt remove nearly as much as is produced while maintaining the lawn with regular mowing.
Moss, on the other hand, is a carbon sink. Moss removes more CO2 from the atmosphere than it produces, in part because its a simpler organism and because it requires less maintenance. It then uses the CO2 it pulls from the air to grow and expand as it fills in your yard.
After 400 million years, mosses have changed little within that time. Their processes are so simple, yet they accomplish an amazing amount with what little they do.
The leaf-like structures of moss are only a single cell-line thick. Moss accomplishes the same photosynthesis processes with one cell-line than what many plants with complicated vascular systems evolved to do.
How Moss Sustains Animals
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