How to get rid of Moss on Lawns
Moss control and then Moss removal in lawns is a practice normally performed in the autumn and spring lawn care months.
If the grass plants activity has thinned or weakened over the past 12 months, especially with the very wet winter to date, now is the time to start Moss control and eradication and some mechanical operations just ahead of over seeding the lawn to turn the tide on the moss and re populate with existing or new grasses whilst the soil is still warm. Moss is traditionally controlled and killed using Soluble Iron commonly known as Sulphate of Iron or Iron Sulphate.
Here is some background information on this troublesome plant ...
Mosses are found in very many situations, for example, on stones, tree trunks and turf. If you have moss on your lawns then it is primarily an indicator that you are not looking after the millions of individual grass plants that make up your lawn.
Where moss is a persistent problem, it often indicates some fundamental weakness in the turf and treatment with a moss killer is often only a short-term answer.
From the ‘Causes of Moss Invasion list’, it should be obvious that persistent moss problems are an indication of some fundamental weakness in a turf area. The presence of significant quantities of moss for long periods each year suggests that the turf may be excessively acid, lacking in fertilizer dressings or excessively wet with a small percentage of actual grass content.
Correcting these deficiencies will result in stronger grass growth and the moss then tends to disappear naturally because of the increased competition presented by healthy grasses.
Simple treatment with a moss-killing chemical is, therefore, often not the complete answer to moss trouble. Cultural control should always be considered first. Prevention is <u>always</u> better than cure.
A lawn should have nothing in it except good dense healthy desirable grasses – neither weeds nor moss. This autumn is the time to get to grips with your moss ridden lawn and do something about it, be cruel to be kind should you wish for a better lawn next spring. The moss is only there because the lawn is being neglected year on year and the grasses have thinned out to such a point that you now have more moss than grass! Left in it's present state, without any renovation programme to restore the grass population into the surface and you will have a mossy lawn next year too - without doubt.
Causes of Moss Invasion
1. A moist turf – poor drainage encourages the fern-like and tufted mosses
2. A soft, spongy sward with a thick fibre layer
3. A very dry soil, e.g. over drains, on mounds and ridges. Inadequate watering or
over-drainage encourages the upright type
4. Bare areas remaining after weeds have died
5. Cutting the grass too low
6. Diseased turf
7. Dry acid soil
8. Low fertility, e.g. deficiencies of plant nutrients
9. In appropriate maintenance
10. Inadequate or poor grass cover and growth
11. Low nutrient status
13. Over-consolidation of the soil - compaction
14. Poor surface levels which may lead to scalping
15. Shade from trees, hedges and buildings and topography – north facing lawn
16. Turf that is not growing under ideal growing conditions
17. Weak and sparse turf
18. Compaction & over consolidation
19. Prolonged periods of wet weather
20. Time of year – autumn, winter and spring