Considering a moss rock garden? You may be entering into the intriguing, highly creative, imaginative and even surreal “Garden of Bliss and Intellect.” Moss, Lichens, Ferns, Quillworts and Liverworts, Horsetail, are amongst some of the interesting plants which you can cultivate in this highly fascinating, educational and conversational garden! Here are lots of fun moss rock garden ideas and photos to get you started.
Lichen Up Your Landscape With These Moss Rock Garden Ideas
A moss rock garden is one of the easiest no-budget gardens you will even consider. No doubt it will also be the best conversation piece in your landscape and yard! It will be a haven of peace, a retreat for meditation and prayer, an educational and entertaining “condensed nature walk” for your kids, philosophical conversation piece, or perhaps a quarry of edible lichens. The benefits for the ecosystem are many and a moss rock garden makes a beautiful interesting addition to your landscaping.
Moss Rock Garden: A PRIMITIVE & ANCIENT WONDERLAND
Like Alice in Wonderland, you are probably curious, as well you should be! Here are some fascinating lichen and moss facts that will capture your imagination and day-dreaming abilities right away:
- Out of 20,000 species of Lichens, there are only two that are poisonous. Unlike fungi, lichens are fungi that form symbiotic relationships with bacteria. Thus it probably behooves them to be a bit more “social” than a fungus is required to be. There are only a few kingdoms of living things in all of creation. Animals, plants and fungus each have their own kingdom. In the Fungi Kingdom, the majority are poisonous with few edible.
- There are many species of lichen that are edible if they are cooked, but please read up on this. Though only 2 are poisonous, they should never be eaten raw unless in a wilderness survival situation, many are not tasty, and some may even be as old as 3000 years old!
- Manna, the food that the Bible says the Lord “rained from heaven” for the Israelites to eat while in the wilderness, which they gathered on Sabbath preparation day, happens to be a lichen!
- Moss is the oldest terrestrial plant on earth!
- Mosses collectively provide more carbon offset than all the trees in the world.
- Even though water is necessary for mosses to develop, they are drought tolerant.
- Moss has a wider growing range of light exposure than any other plant. See more moss facts here.
Benefits of A Moss Rock Garden
SOME OF THE PRACTICAL ADVANTAGES are that these garden buddies are truly excellent for brightening up the landscape and adding value and appeal to your home. They help control erosion, they eliminate the need for mowing or weed-eating in the areas in which you establish them. This lowers your lawn bill, beautifies your yard and prevents your valuable soil from washing away with each rain. Another practical job it can do is make a perfect splatter-guard for basement windows! So many creative things can be done with this precious resource, plant and fungus landscaping tool!
How To Make A Moss Rock Garden
There are so many things you can do with moss and lichens in your landscape. You can easily transfer moss and lichens into your garden or landscape an area near your house entirely for a moss rock garden. Here is what you will need:
- A small shovel or trowel to loosen up moss clumps
- A wide bucket or wide rubber feeder like you can get at Tractor Supply or a feed store, something wide and water proof for gathering your moss and lichens
- A pair of garden gloves
- Chosen spots near the house or garden which you would like to give pretty, rich looking ground cover – make spot bare and loosen the soil just enough to give the moss something to “grab” on to.
- “moss and lichens” supply or gathering spot which is near enough to transport these unique and lovely garden “friends”
SOME TIPS FOR “HUNTING” A “HARVEST” OF MOSS AND LICHENS:
- Look in the woods near your house or in your neighborhood.
- Collect small transportable rocks which already have moss growing on them.
- Look on the bank or rocks near a creek bed or other water source.
- On banks of a road in the country.
- On cliffs and natural ledges.
- At the base of large old trees.
- Never take all the moss, leave enough that it will keep replenishing for future “harvesting”.
Moss is easy to grow. It spreads quickly in shady areas and spots near the house or bordering a garden as long as you clear the area, ruffle up the soil giving it something to cling to and spread out over. It likes moisture and so you should water any new plantings often, especially initially.
My moss garden was started last year. With minimal effort I planted this area near our newly installed outdoor stairway and it took “hold” easily, kept growing and has thrived. I think it looks quite handsome, don’t you? I keep adding to it little by little, and by next year I expect it to be twice the size it is now! Go ahead, let a little moss “lichen” up your home in just one afternoon! That is all it took me to get a moss rock garden started!