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Published on February 15, 2023

Pro Tips

How to Get Rid of Moss in Your Lawn

Has your yard turned into a carpet of moss? These lawn care tips will help you remove moss in your lawn, prevent its growth in the future, and encourage the growth of healthy and lush green grass instead.

Person raking a lawn

1
Remove It with a Rake

Moss grows shallow roots, which means that it can often simply be removed with a bit of rigorous raking. You might pull out a bit of grass, but don’t worry, the longer roots of the grass will help it withstand being thoroughly raked.
Person applying an herbicide

2
Make Quick Work of Removal with an Herbicide

If the moss continues to persist after raking, then it might be time to reach for some herbicides. You can even find many environmentally friendly options in our ECO product selection. Always make sure you follow the application instructions and give the herbicide some time to work. Then, rake up the rest of the moss.

Keep in mind that herbicide treatments will only have the effect you desire if you also practice good lawn care and take the right steps to grow a healthy, moss-free lawn

Caution

Before using any kind of lawn-care product or treatment, read the package directions and note any instructions about protective equipment, proper attire, application procedures, and any safety precautions you need to take. Always apply the product carefully and sweep up spills right away, as some herbicides and pesticides can stain surfaces like driveways, walkways, and patios.

3
Give Baking Soda a Try Instead

Organic options can be just as effective as herbicides when combined with good lawn care practices. Try these 2 eco-friendly solutions that you can make using common household products first.

  • Mix 1 box of baking soda into 2 gallons of water at room temperature. Apply it evenly over the areas of your lawn that have moss growth, enough to soak 1/2-1” below the ground.
  • Mix 1-2 tbsp of a gentle dish detergent with 1 gallon of water. Apply it thoroughly and evenly over your lawn with a watering can.

4
Test Your Soil pH Level

Moss has an easier time growing in acidic soil. First, test your soil pH using a soil test kit. Then, use an amendment such as garden lime, compost, or fertilizer to make it more alkaline.
Person using a lawn aerator

5
Improve Your Soil Drainage

A high moisture content caused by poorly draining soil can create the perfect conditions for moss growth. Look out for areas where water pools and does not dissipate, such as high-traffic areas or spots where the soil has a high clay content.

Where compaction is the cause of the draining issues, you can use a soil aerator or dethatcher to aerate your lawn and help loosen it up.

If the issue is caused by a high clay content, then you can mix organic matter like compost, manure, humus, or organic carbon into the soil.
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Pro Tip

Aeration is best carried out in the early fall for cool-season grasses and in the mid-spring to early summer for warm-weather grasses.

Man pruning a tree

6
Cut Down on Lawn Shade

Moss thrives in cool and dark spots, so you can help get rid of it by limiting how much shade covers your lawn. One way to do this is by pruning back any trees or shrubs that are casting shadows. Alternatively, shade-resistant grass like fescue may be able to crowd the moss out.

7
Limit Other Potential Stressors

Moss takes hold more readily in lawns that are damaged from other stressors. This may include excessive foot traffic, damage from pets, insect infestations, and disease. In areas where grass can’t grow, moss may grow instead.

Ever opportunistic, moss can also take root in areas where you have cut your grass too short. Adjust your lawn mower cutting height so that you never cut your grass shorter than 1”.
Hands holding moss

8
Can’t Beat It? Grow a Moss Lawn Instead

If moss just seems to love the conditions on your lawn and constantly fighting it would take too much effort, then consider simply letting it take over instead. Moss has a beautiful green colour, can grow well in areas where grass may not, and doesn’t require much effort to maintain.

To get full and green lawn moss coverage, you’ll want to help it along. We carry ground cover products that include moss, making it easier to get your whole lawn covered for a nice and uniform look.
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Transplant Moss in a Few Easy Steps

If your lawn is failing but moss is thriving, you can remove the grass and let the moss take over as follows:

  1. Identify the Location. First, choose a new area where you want to grow moss and find moss in another area of your lawn that is growing in similar conditions to the new spot.
  2. Prepare the Ground. Remove grass or other plants in the new area and rake away any remaining twigs and leaves.
  3. Check the Soil pH. Test the pH of the soil in the planting area. Since moss prefers acidic soil, you can lower the pH with sulphur, if needed.
  4. Prepare the Soil. Tamp down and lightly water the soil to create the perfect conditions for the new moss.
  5. Gather Moss. Go to the area identified previously and gather up some clumps of moss roughly the size of your open hand. Dig down deep enough to take out all of the roots as well as some of the soil below it to help keep the moss from drying out.
  6. Plant the Moss. Moisten the bottom of the clumps of moss and press them firmly into the new soil; this will help remove any pockets of air. You can space out the pieces, as they will fill in and touch as the moss grows. If needed, you can keep the moss in place with small sticks.
  7. Water Well. Moss requires generous watering until it becomes established, which may take several weeks. Thankfully, after it is established, you will only need to water during periods of extended hot and dry weather.

Disclaimer

These DIY projects are provided for informational purposes only. The information contained in RONA’s DIYs is intended to provide general guidelines to simplify jobs around the house. Because tools, products, materials, techniques, building codes, and local regulations are continually changing, RONA inc. assumes no responsibility for the accuracy of the information contained herein and disclaims any liability for the omissions, errors, or outcome of any project. RONA inc. makes no representation on the feasibility of any project and the viewer bears all risks coming with the realization of the projects. It is the responsibility of the viewer to ensure compliance with all applicable laws, rules, codes, and regulations for a project. The viewer must always take proper safety precautions and exercise caution when taking on any project. If there is any doubt in regard to any element of a project, please consult a licensed professional. 

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