Moss Rocks! Turf infestation

 

Dear Moss Rock,

Thank you for dispelling the myths. I have an infestation of sagina in my turf and have yet to discover a permanent solution to its removal. Do you have any suggestions?

Bonnie

Hello Bonnie,

Sagina refers to a long list of plants, many of which can be invasive to our cultivated landscapes. Sagina subulata whose common name is Irish moss and Sagina subulata aurea (Scotch moss) are two plants that are very often thought to be a moss. With an appearance that resembles some acrocarpous species of moss and plant labels to back up their borrowed pedigree, many people simply assume they are real moss.

Both of these moss-mimickers need full sun to thrive, produce small flowers, and have roots which is unlike any true moss. If a species of Sagina is invading your moss, I advise removal by hand before they set seed, if Sagina is invading your turf grass you will probably need chemical control, as most turf problems tend to result in their use! Best of luck, Bonnie.

David Spain a.k.a. Moss Rock

Moss -- Dicranum scoparium

NOT moss -- Scotch moss, Sagina subulata aurea

I am often asked about Irish Moss and Scotch Moss as though they were actually bryophytes and I thought I’d take this opportunity to set the record straight.

The desire to have a ground hugging, evergreen, carpeting plant is widespread throughout the horticulture world. There are not many to choose from and mosses are taking center stage these days. Their qualities are undeniably attractive and ecologically friendly, so it’s no wonder that cultivars such as Sagina subulata borrow the reference to moss in their name. However, Irish moss only resembles moss but does not share in it’s distinctive qualities and versatility. In fact, Scotch and Irish Mosses are well known for their finicky performance and very often wind up withering away. So the next time you see that pretty fuzzy plant at the nursery with the mossy name, be forewarned of it’s non-relation to mosses and demanding nature.

 

 

Order your Moss Rocks!  online today.  Moss is grand.  Moss is green.  Moss is good. Make the most of it; order Moss Rocks! today.

By: Helen Yoest

Follow Moss and Stone Gardens – Where Moss Rocks! on Twitter @Moss_Rocks and our Facebook Like page Moss and Stone Gardens – Where Moss Rocks!

To learn more about Moss and Stone Gardens – Where Moss Rocks!, please visit our website.  Or email David Spain at info@mossandstonegardens.com.

Unless otherwise noted, all photo are credited to Ken Gergle.

Moss Rocks! – Collecting moss

Failing mosses being colonized by appropriate species.

Dear David Spain,

My husband and I have collected moss from around the neighborhood and have transplanted it into an area where we are creating a moss garden. For a while it seemed as all the moss was doing well and was green, but now some of the moss has turned brown and looks dead while other areas look great and are spreading. What are we doing wrong? Please help as we have spent a lot of time collecting and transplanting and do not want to loose what we have.

Thanks for your help,
Cindy

Dear Cindy,

When you collect different species of moss and then plant them together, their needs aren’t always the same. You may think of moss as just moss, but of course there are many species and it’s often difficult to discern differences without using a loupe or consulting a bryologist. I suggest that you learn the basics of identification by knowing your acrocarp from your pleurocarp and keep these two separated.

Most acrocarps do not like constant moisture while most pleurocarps do. My advice for your situation is to continue a regular watering schedule and allow the mosses that are flourishing to take over the ones that are not. Dead or dying mosses of one species can make a welcoming surface for other mosses to invade or spores to germinate on. You can speed up the process by fragmenting some of the flourishing mosses directly on top of the ones that are failing.

I have seen large areas transplanted with a moss that was not appropriate for the conditions and all of it die. The area continued to be watered as if the moss was still alive and after a couple of months the spores of another species germinated on top of the decaying moss which created a perfect nursery for the right species to develop.

This bed of dead moss (photo above) acted as a moisture retentive substrate, erosion control, and weed preventer. It allowed for spores of other mosses to have places to land and take hold without blowing away. Developing a moss area by transplanting will eventually lead to some of the species performing better than others and the faster growing species will subsequently dominate the area.

You can of course let mother nature decide what species to introduce by clearing the area down to bare earth and then begin watering just as though there was moss already present. By creating the conditions first, spores that are present will germinate and grow, this way the appropriate species will be encouraged. If you build it, they will come!  Happy mossgardening!

David Spain a.k.a. Moss Rock

 

Order your Moss Rocks!  online today.  Moss is grand.  Moss is green.  Moss is good. Make the most of it; order Moss Rocks! today.

By: Helen Yoest

Follow Moss and Stone Gardens – Where Moss Rocks! on Twitter @Moss_Rocks and our Facebook Like page Moss and Stone Gardens – Where Moss Rocks!

To learn more about Moss and Stone Gardens – Where Moss Rocks!, please visit our website.  Or email David Spain at info@mossandstonegardens.com.

Unless otherwise noted, all photo are credited to Ken Gergle.

Moss and Stone Gardens — Where Moss Rocks! 2011 tribute — It was a very good year

 

Order your Moss Rocks!  online today.  Moss is grand.  Moss is green.  Moss is good. Make the most of it; order Moss Rocks! today.

By: Helen Yoest

Follow Moss and Stone Gardens – Where Moss Rocks! on Twitter @Moss_Rocks and our Facebook Like page Moss and Stone Gardens – Where Moss Rocks!

To learn more about Moss and Stone Gardens – Where Moss Rocks!, please visit our website.  Or email David Spain at info@mossandstonegardens.com.

Unless otherwise noted, all photo are credited to Ken Gergle.

Moss Rocks! on My Carolina Today TV NBC-17

 

David Spain, co-owner of Moss and Stone Gardens – Where Moss Rocks!, had the privilege to be a guest on NBC-17′s My Carolina Today TV with host, Valonda Calloway.

“It was such an honor to be able to show Valonda, Kim and the crew around The Moss Farm, they all wanted to move-in! Sorry I took your closing line Valonda, we did all have a great time though.”  ~David Spain


 

Order your Moss Rocks!  online today.  Moss is grand.  Moss is green.  Moss is good. Make the most of it; order Moss Rocks! today.

By: Helen Yoest

Follow Moss and Stone Gardens – Where Moss Rocks! on Twitter @Moss_Rocks and our Facebook Like page Moss and Stone Gardens – Where Moss Rocks!

To learn more about Moss and Stone Gardens – Where Moss Rocks!, please visit our website.  Or email David Spain at info@mossandstonegardens.com.

Unless otherwise noted, all photo are credited to Ken Gergle.

Moss Rocks!’s David Spain on GardenLine Radio with C.L. Fornari


The ever enthusiastic moss man, David Spain recently talked moss with  gardening enthusiast, C.L. Fornari on  Gardenline,  It was mossome!  Check it out.

C.L.’s interview probed moss in general, plus  how Moss Rocks! came to be.

 

 

 

David Spain is a passionate moss expert, pioneering moss cultivation, working to educate gardeners of the perils of wild harvesting of mosses and to, instead, help them develop sustainable propagation techniques.

Did you know Moss Rocks! is a home decor item using a specialized ceramic container, with a patent pending design to maintain and display Dicranum mosses? The use of Dicranum moss makes this gift item uniquely suited for low maintenance care, indoors and out.

For more on moss education, listen in by clicking below  

 

 

Order your Moss Rocks!  online today.  Moss is grand.  Moss is green.  Moss is good. Make the most of it; order Moss Rocks! today.

By: Helen Yoest

Follow Moss and Stone Gardens – Where Moss Rocks! on Twitter @Moss_Rocks and our Facebook Like page Moss and Stone Gardens – Where Moss Rocks!

To learn more about Moss and Stone Gardens – Where Moss Rocks!, please visit our website.  Or email David Spain at info@mossandstonegardens.com.

Unless otherwise noted, all photo are credited to Ken Gergle.

Moss Rocks! Rocks Valentine’s Day


Valentines Day is often represented with images of cupid wearing a diaper shooting an arrow right through the hearts of unsuspecting love.  That’s what happened one day when cupid struck his arrow through the hearts of Pet Rock and Chia Pet. But, there is a twist to this story.  Cupid, had a fashion malfunction.  He was wearing a moss diaper, which was common for his generation, but he had an accident.

Chia and Rock’s cupid was getting up in the years and he couldn’t fly as well as the other cupids on the love circuit.  When he was taking aim at Chia and Rock, he ran into a flying pet poodle wearing mama-jamas.  The collision caused spores to spew from his moss diaper.  Just as the arrows struck his love-creating hearts, spores sprinkled down, lightly dusting the young loves.

This love led hot fun in the summertime, but with a cool twist.  Both Chia and Rock had an insatiable desire to, a-hem, find a moss garden to express their love.   Moss Rocks! is the love child of this innocent love.

Fortunately for the masses, later generations of Moss Rocks! came true to seed, sorta speak, and reproduce in three sizes – Pebble, Cobble, Boulder.

To celebrate this originial sacred union, Moss and Stone Gardens — Where Moss Rocks! is offering a special and introducing  2 new products – Moss Stream & Rain Shower.

The specials include:

The Impressor
Impress your Valentine with the most unique gift available; one of our now famous Moss Rocks! in the Cobble (medium) size!

Our Moss Stream deep watering bottle is bundled with this package to round out a very Impressive gift that will be remembered year round!

INCLUDED: Toadstool (color)  Cobble (size)
Moss Stream 250ml deep watering bottle
Valentines Card with the name of the shipper
No size or color substitutions available on this special order!

The Thriller
Your Valentine will be absolutely thrilled with this package we have put together featuring the Cobble (medium) and Pebble (small) sizes of our Moss Rocks! This package is bundled with our complete watering solution, featuring the Moss Stream deep watering bottle, and the Moss Rainshower ultra fine sprayer.

INCLUDED: Toadstool (color)  Cobble (size)
Bark (color)   Pebble (size)
Moss Stream 250ml deep watering bottle
Moss Rain Shower 2oz ultra fine sprayer
Valentines Card with the name of the shipper
No size or color substitutions available on this special order!

The “OMG”
OMG!… what else can your Valentine say after receiving the full set of our Moss Rocks! and our complete watering solution all in one day!

This combination is the ultimate pleaser, and we have a guess as to what the lucky recipient of this gift will say!

INCLUDED: Toadstool (color)  Boulder (size)
Raindrop (color)   Cobble (size)
Bark (color)    Pebble (size)
Moss Stream 250ml deep watering bottle
Moss Rain Shower 2oz ultra fine sprayer
Valentines Card with the name of the shipper
No size or color substitutions available on this special order!

IMPORTANT MESSAGE

A disclaimer from Moss and Stone Gardens — Where Moss Rocks! co-owner David Spain:

The sight of moss may lead to some moss-enducing activities that we, as a company, cannot be responsible for.  Please moss responsibility.  Your secrets are safe with me —  Moss my heart and hope to die.  So party on and send your sweetie something peaty!

 

 

 

Order your Moss Rocks!  online today.  Moss is grand.  Moss is green.  Moss is good. Make the most of it; order Moss Rocks! today.

By: Helen Yoest

Follow Moss and Stone Gardens – Where Moss Rocks! on Twitter @Moss_Rocks and our Facebook Like page Moss and Stone Gardens – Where Moss Rocks!

To learn more about Moss and Stone Gardens – Where Moss Rocks!, please visit our website.  Or email David Spain at info@mossandstonegardens.com.

Unless otherwise noted, all photo are credited to Ken Gergle.

Moss, an Orchid, and Marsha Owen’s pottery

 

Phalaenopsis blooms rise high above a commissioned pottery piece by Marsha Owen.  A beautiful work of art that can be used inside as a centerpiece on the dining room table or in the foyer as a fresh welcome home. Set this dish garden next to the bed for a soothing sight while waiting for the light to wane from evening to night.  During the warm summer months, this moss and orchid dish garden could be admired outdoors.

David Spain wanted an orchid container that used moss as  a living plant not as a dried up, deceased, dressing.  David explains, “Paired with orchids, moss is treated most often as a mulch not as a living plant.  Wanting to combine moss and an orchid as living species, I was inspired to create a container that allowed the two to be displayed together, but with both kept alive.”

David’s clever design is a ring to combine a living moss dish garden with an orchid (or another plant); one that possess  separate containers, allowing for different watering and soil conditions.

When designing your orchid container, considering adding live mulch to keep the composition fresh and alive.

 

 

Order your Moss Rocks!  online today.  Moss is grand.  Moss is green.  Moss is good. Make the most of it; order Moss Rocks! today.

By: Helen Yoest

Follow Moss and Stone Gardens – Where Moss Rocks! on Twitter @Moss_Rocks and our Facebook Like page Moss and Stone Gardens – Where Moss Rocks!

To learn more about Moss and Stone Gardens – Where Moss Rocks!, please visit our website.  Or email David Spain at info@mossandstonegardens.com.

Unless otherwise noted, all photo are credited to Ken Gergle.

David Spain in Country Gardens magazine

 

Our very own, David Spain co-owner of Moss and Stone Gardens – Where Moss Rocks  is featured in the most recent issue — early spring — of  Country Gardens magazine.  We featured the photo shoot back in May; today, the story is nestled among many other truly unique and wonderful stories in one of America’s most loved magazine.

The story is titled:  As Green as it Gets, by moi,

Raised high in a pedestal dish or lowered into the depths of an old oak log, a moss dish garden lets you admire a lilliputian landscape at close range.  David Spain, co-owner of Moss and Stone Gardens in Raleigh, creates these verdant little landscapes in various vessels. ….

The story also includes an in-depth how-to for making your own dish gardens at home.  I hope you pick up your copy today.  When yours arrives in the mail, carve out some time and settle in for a good, long read.

 

 

 

 

Order your Moss Rocks!  online today.  Moss is grand.  Moss is green.  Moss is good. Make the most of it; order Moss Rocks! today.

By: Helen Yoest

Follow Moss and Stone Gardens – Where Moss Rocks! on Twitter @Moss_Rocks and our Facebook Like page Moss and Stone Gardens – Where Moss Rocks!

To learn more about Moss and Stone Gardens – Where Moss Rocks!, please visit our website.  Or email David Spain at info@mossandstonegardens.com.

Unless otherwise noted, all photo are credited to Ken Gergle.

Moss Rocks! will rock Duke — David Spain — A Garden of Moss

David Spain will be speaking to the Durham Garden Forum, an informal group that meets monthly to enrich the members’ gardening knowledge and skill.  January’s topic: “A Garden of Moss,” with David Spain of Moss and Stone Gardens. With 10 years of experience cultivating moss and creating gardens, David will share his expertise on moss culture and design strategies. Contact Durham Garden Forum at durhamgardenforum@gmail.com. Parking is free after 5 p.m.

Hope you can make it!

Speaker:  David Spain

Sponsor:  Sarah P. Duke GardensLocation:  Sarah P. Duke Gardens - Map
Cost:  Free for forum members; $10 general public. Annual membership fee $25.
When:   to 
Contact:  Smith, Sara
Email:  slsmith@duke.edu
Phone:  919-668-1707

 

 

 

Order your Moss Rocks!  online today.  Moss is grand.  Moss is green.  Moss is good. Make the most of it; order Moss Rocks! today.

By: Helen Yoest

Follow Moss and Stone Gardens – Where Moss Rocks! on Twitter @Moss_Rocks and our Facebook Like page Moss and Stone Gardens – Where Moss Rocks!

To learn more about Moss and Stone Gardens – Where Moss Rocks!, please visit our website.  Or email David Spain at info@mossandstonegardens.com.

Unless otherwise noted, all photo are credited to Ken Gergle.

Earthworm castings on moss

Dear David Spain,

I have been encouraging moss in my backyard and following your tips for a regular watering schedule. I can really see a big difference in the growth of the moss since I started and we are getting very excited with the results. The trouble is that there’s often many earthworm castings on the surface that are an eyesore and difficult to remove. What do you recommend to deal with this annoying problem. Thank you in advance for your help.

James

 


Dear James,

You are not alone in this problem. The reason that earthworms sometimes leave behind their castings above the surface is a direct correlation to the amount of moisture in the soil.  As the soil becomes saturated with water the worms will migrate towards the top layer of soil. The cure is to reduce watering volume, ensuring the ground does not become saturated. If you are using a sprinkler system, adjust it’s settings to reduce the run time or frequency. Light and frequent waterings are beneficial for moss growth but watering too much is only a waste of water and can promote other problems such as earthworm castings or slime molds.

There are a couple of techniques to remove the worm castings after they appear. One is to let them dry out completely, this will allow you to crumble the castings without causing a mud cake on top of the moss. Another is to use a knife to slice off the tower of the casting pile and discard, moisten the remaining casting and allow it to soften, then using a pump sprayer, concentrate a jet stream directly on to the pile and dissolve it. Using a sprayer instead of a water hose will minimize the amount of water needed to dissolve the small spot without saturating the ground and beginning the cycle all over again.

Creating the proper conditions for moss growth is a balancing act. We can create an environment that will allow moss to grow at an increased rate, but we must be careful to not create the conditions for undesirable side effects.  Happy mossgardening.

David Spain, a.k.a. Moss Rock

 

Order your Moss Rocks!  online today.  Moss is grand.  Moss is green.  Moss is good. Make the most of it; order Moss Rocks! today.

By: Helen Yoest

Follow Moss and Stone Gardens – Where Moss Rocks! on Twitter @Moss_Rocks and our Facebook Like page Moss and Stone Gardens – Where Moss Rocks!

To learn more about Moss and Stone Gardens – Where Moss Rocks!, please visit our website.  Or email David Spain at info@mossandstonegardens.com.

Unless otherwise noted, all photo are credited to Ken Gergle.