Moss is growing thick and fast especially in areas of shade and even more if leaves have fallen; heavy dues at this time of year help it grow as well.
Moss (in a nutshell)
A small flowerless green plant which lacks true roots, growing in low carpets or rounded cushions in damp habitats and reproducing by means of spores released from stalked capsules.
Because moss thrives in damp conditions it is less common in free draining soils and more so in clay rich soils, but whatever is your case be sure to clear leaves off regularly and to mow at the right winter height to give the grass a chance to establish roots and grow through and flourish.
Moss treatment – treated v untreated
Mosses grow slowly and are tolerant of shade and close mowing and are able to populate turf situations when turf grasses are under stress and bare soil areas are available for the moss to invade. Moss can spread either by spores or by detached fragments of the parent plant material. However mosses are less tolerant of wear. Mosses are not the cause of turf decline but a symptom of environmental conditions or poor maintenance regimes.
Causes of Moss
|Long periods of wet weather||Long periods of dry weather|
|Low soil fertility||Compacted soils|
|Low or high soil pH||Excessive shade|
|Poorly drained soils||High thatch content|
|Poor air circulation||Closely mown / weak grass growth|
Finally, ineffective maintenance regimes, particularly mowing, fertilising, aeration, brushing, scarifying and pesticide / weed control operations.
Don’t mow too short
Keep turf mowed at 1” no shorter
Aerate lawns to allow water to move away from surface (back fill holes with dressing where drainage is poor or soil is predominantly clay)
Prune low trees/bushes to increase air and light to lawn
Feed lawn and control weeds
Scarify to remove thatch
Treat moss with liquid iron or with fertilisers with high iron content
I’ve been carry out moss control treatments November through to January so call if you need some help with moss – treatments can still be applied until around Easter.