The Moss Lawn Project: A Lush Yard with Less Water
A typical grass lawn requires thousands of gallons of water per year to maintain. Unless you're cutting it with a push mower, it uses electricity or gas to trim, as well. On top of all of that, many homeowners use chemical fertilizers to keep their lawns looking lush and green.
What if there were a way to have a lovely lawn without all of the maintenance and waste?
There is! More and more folks are embracing the moss lawn. It's a little counter-intuitive at first. Homeowners spend a lot of time and energy trying to keep moss off of their lawns. Once you get past the idea of moss as a pest, though, you can really start to appreciate its virtues. Once it's established, the moss requires hardly any watering. It grows great in shady areas and provides a soft, low-maintenance ground cover.
Moss lawns don't require any nasty fertilizers or herbicides. They don't need to be mowed, and once established they only need to be moistened with water occasionally, when things look a bit dry.
My husband and I have been coveting a moss lawn for quite some time. We had a few mossy patches already, and we've been secretly hoping that it would spread on its own. That didn't work out so well, but last weekend we noticed an abundance of beautiful moss on the rocks at a nearby creek. We gathered a couple of grocery bags' worth and decided to give this thing a go!
How to Start a Moss Lawn
We'd been reading up on starting our moss lawn and ran across several great resources!
If you're not fortunate enough to collect your own moss, there is a company that makes moss milkshakes and starter moss for your yard.
Feeling a little more DIY? It's super simple to make your own moss milkshake! You just need some scavenged moss and lots of beer or buttermilk. Kerry over at e-How explains how to make the milkshake in your blender.
The e-How tutorial didn't give a lot of information on what to do once you're all milkshaked up, but don't fret! Moss Acres has a ton of advice on transplanting that moss. It takes quite a bit of water to get the moss established, but once it's taken hold the maintenance is pretty low-key.