Ground cover ID

Asked May 14, 2019, 2:27 PM EDT

I would like to identify a ground cover that has the appearance of many tiny spruce trees that are about 1/2-3/4 inch in height and have a tap root about 1 inch deep. While it is attractive, it also seems pretty invasive and could choke out desirable plants. Removal requires taking the mat of 1 inch deep soil to get all the roots. Any information on this ground cover is welcome. Thanks... Larry

Anchorage Alaska

3 Responses

This looks like a type of club moss. Pictures later in the season would make me more certain especially pictures of flowers. If you decide to plant something there they shouldn't be a problem. I have never heard of these being very aggressive.

Thanks Gino. I do not recall seeing any flowers last year and the plants do not get any bigger or look any different as the season progresses. In fact, it appears that it does not change from one season to the next and there is no dead material in the mat. I did not look at it as the snow melted off to see what it looked like at that time.

There are also some similar looking true mosses that don't get the same height of growth to them as the club moss. In either case I don't think you will have a problem with it preventing you from planting something. Though the soil may be both wet and acidic which is the preferred conditions for all mosses.