Grow Your Own Moss

Moss seems to develop in all of the places you don’t need it or don’t want it. Then, when you need it for a dish garden or bonsai project there is none or not enough to be found.

If you know that you are going to need moss at some time in the future, the best solution may be to grow your own. Moss always seems to be found in a moist, shady environment so you will have to duplicate these conditions. To produce your own moss garden, scrape about six square inches of moss off an existing surface or from several smaller surfaces. There are more than 100 different species of moss so it you collect from different places, be sure you get moss that looks the same. Put the moss in a blender and add one cup of beer or buttermilk and one half teaspoon of sugar. Mix for about one half a minute or until your ingredients have a uniform applesauce appearance in texture. Your mixture is then spread over bare soil, a layer of bricks in a large pan of water or on a layer of rocks. The bricks, soil or rocks must be kept moist and be located in an area of dappled sunlight or strong reflected light.

When the moss has become established, it should be fertilized monthly with a solution of half strength fish emulsion fertilizer. Peel it off its substrate as needed.