Asked March 17, 2016, 1:15 PM EDT

Please give me a recommendation for help eliminating moss in the flower beds primarily on bark dust often surrounding emerging flowers. Also on the rose bushes crowns. Thank you

Clackamas County Oregon

2 Responses

We have a great website to help you with your moss control questions Is it an aesthetic issue? Or do you think the moss is causing a problem? Moss is very easy to rake but unless you treat the underlying issues that promote moss growth, it will most certainly return. In general, moss will opportunistically grow when deep shade, high acidity, poor drainage, and soil compaction are factors.

Mechanical means of removal and then addressing the cultural issues noted above is a least-toxic approach. The barkdust is a perfect home for moss because it is generally acidic (particularly if it is Douglas Fir bark), and will hold moisture. I have moss on my rose bush crowns, but I have found it not to be a problem. However, I will occasionally mechanically remove some moss and then mulch with a thin layer of compost or wood chips. I suspect the moss may be especially thick this year because it has been so wet. The site above does discuss some chemical controls but many are quite toxic and best used during the dormant months. There are commercially available products for the home owner. Please be sure to read the label and follow the directions to ensure safe application. Good luck!

Thanks, Sara! I'll pursue the link and continue to beat my head against the wall, I liked that you asked me if it was an aesthetic problem. I guess it is, but it's spreading so uncontrollably, I'm kinda afraid of waking up some a.m. In a fuzzy green nighty. So be Oregon!!!!!