Anyone struggling with a sparse wrinkled brother needs to remove moss from the lawn in their garden, which means Rhytidiadelphus squarrosus, or lawn moss. Any lawn can be affected by a patch of moss, but that’s not really the problem. Only when the spot is visibly increasing and is not being fought can it turn into work to eliminate it. Since very few garden owners employ a gardener, they have to deal with the issue of moss in the lawn themselves.

Causes of moss in the lawn

Almost every garden owner will therefore be familiar with the problem, unless they have not made the typical mistakes when laying out the lawn or caring for it. Those are the sources of trouble and the fact that moss is a very adaptable and tough plant. It is widespread throughout the northern hemisphere, also occurs in New Zealand and makes life unnecessarily difficult, especially for gardeners in Central Europe.

  • Heavy and dense soil
  • waterlogging
  • nutrient deficiency
  • Seed mix Berlin Tiergarten
  • Too little light
  • Too rare cut

These are the factors that favor the growth of moss in the lawn. If the Berliner Tiergarten seed mixture is used to sow the lawn, this is the best basis for the growth of moss. Even with a beautiful lawn, success is no accident. If you want to have a beautiful and lush green lawn, you have to show commitment.

Are there types of lawn that have less moss infestation?

Even if the lawn looks uniformly green, it does not consist of just one type of plant. There are always different types of grass in the lawn seed bag. These grasses all have different needs and characteristics and can therefore develop different deficiencies. To find out which lawn is the right one for the garden, you should ask yourself a few questions. For example, it is important to note whether the sun shines on the surface all day and which corner of it is shadowed for a long time. When children play on it, the lawn needs to be much more robust than when it is hardly walked on at all. Therefore, the lawn is also divided into categories:

  • Zierrasen
  • utility lawn
  • Sportrasen

You can already imagine from the designations how the stress turns out. But no matter which type of lawn you choose, good quality lawn seed is important.

Even if you have sown a beautiful colorful meadow afterwards, you don’t necessarily want to see moss in the lawn. Because in the long run, the moss crowds out all other plants, as well as the grass plants themselves. It is getting bigger and bigger and with it the effort to get rid of it. When a new lawn is laid out, it is important to ensure that the soil is sufficiently and properly prepared. It needs to be fluffed up and raked smooth. Spring or late summer is the right time to lay out a new lawn. Even if you get it delivered as rolled turf, it can later collect moss.

Causes of moss in the lawn

First and foremost, moss likes to grow in shady areas of the lawn. It will therefore preferentially grow where there is constant shade covering the lawn and this spot should be inspected regularly. If the treatment with the appropriate measures remains relatively ineffective, you can still try to work at this point with special lawn seed that is especially suitable for the shaded area. If this measure is not helpful either, you should consider removing the lawn at this point and replacing it with a suitable plant.

Even if grass is actually robust, it needs the right mix of dry and wet. In places where the soil is compacted or loamy and the moisture does not seep properly, the roots of the grass rot and moss can spread. A first measure could be to dig up the relevant spot and mix in sand. Then the water can drain away. If the groundwater level is too high at this point and the earth is always more than wet, you should also consider whether this point should be designed alternatively.


Moss killers have the property of combating the symptoms, but not eliminating the cause. In addition, these agents are chemicals that are not accepted by every gardener. What is new is an agent with the active ingredient quinoclamin, a metabolic toxin which, according to the manufacturer, should keep the lawn free of moss for a season. This product is also a chemical agent and the treatment will cause the moss to turn yellow and eventually die. This remedy should only be used in dry weather to maintain the required concentration. Incidentally, it can cause rust stains on stones, so care should be taken when applying it to sidewalks.

wood ash

In connection with moss in the lawn, wood ash is also often mentioned as a means of defense. This will occur in large quantities, especially if you use an open fireplace or a coal stove. However, it should be noted that only “clean” wood ash should be used. This means that even when lighting wood in the stove, only paper without color should be used, black and white newspaper is just right. The resulting wood ash neutralizes acidic soil and thus removes the nutrients from the moss.

Tip: Wood ash neutralizes the soil and is suitable as a fertilizer.


Iron fertilizer is very often recommended for removing moss in the lawn. However, this substance is a toxic and highly corrosive product, which is more likely to harm the gardener than the moss. In any case, it cannot be removed efficiently with it and only causes a load on the floor. Iron fertilizer is also acidic, and that’s exactly what mosses love. It is similar with all herbicides, because they do not attack the cause of growth, only the parts of the plant that can be seen above ground.

scarify the lawn

The tip is often given to scarify the lawn, i.e. to “aerate” it. This can be very useful for the lawn for a variety of reasons. A scarifier works with knives that cut into the ground at adjustable depths. This not only gets air into the soil, but also the roots of the moss are torn out. It is true that some lawn roots fall victim, but the lawn can cope with this and makes room for new growth. This is how the lawn should be treated for scarifying:

  • Mow the lawn as short as possible
  • Scarify when the ground is dry
  • Set blade depth to approx. 3 mm
  • Once in the longitudinal direction, then in the transverse direction
  • Possibly apply moss killer

If Moss Destroyer is used, you have to wait a good 14 days before reseeding the lawn. Otherwise, the bare spots can be reseeded immediately. There are special lawn seed mixtures for this purpose, e.g. B. shaded lawn and lawn seed for overseeding.

Note: The more often the lawn is walked on or played on, the more compacted the surface becomes.

preventive measures

If the lawn is well cared for, the formation of moss should be largely avoided. Even if a small patch of moss forms, it can be removed immediately, preventing large patches from forming in the first place. It is more appropriate to take care of your lawn more often and then do it with relatively little maintenance than the other way around.

  • Mow ornamental lawns twice a week
  • Utility lawn 1-2 times a week
  • Shady lawn 1x per week
  • Landscape lawn 1-3 times a year

The more often the lawn is mowed, the more shoots the grass plants form and the denser the growth. The denser the turf carpet is, the more robust it becomes and the impact load can be increased. On the other hand, the density prevents light and air from getting into the soil, which affects the lawn less than the moss.

The cutting height is decisive for whether moss forms more or less quickly. The usual height is 35-50 millimeters for normal lawns, while ornamental lawns are only 10-30 millimeters. In midsummer you can do without these heights, otherwise the lawn will dry out too quickly and the plants will be damaged.

For this reason, watering the lawn is also often seen, although it requires a large use of water. If so, watering should be done in the morning hours, when the sun is not yet hot and the soil can fully soak up the water.

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