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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I'm not trying to have a suburban yard by any means, but when we bought this property we had one patch of nice grass. it was where we pulled in back in the day before the driveway and garage. it looked so nice right in front of the house. now...anywhere we've cleared/raked out under trees...moss is okey dokey with me. it IS green, so that's fine. a lot of those areas never have anything grow. suddenly this year, my little beautiful grass area has been overtaken with the green moss. it's funny too, since that part of the yard gets direct sunshine in the summer for most of the late afternoon & evening. since we no longer park there, I love it looking pretty. even have wonderful cottage flower beds in that space here and there. :) the moss is killing the grass, so what can I do to get rid of it without hurting everything else?? could I do it now so that the grass can grow better in the spring? thanks.
 

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LOL, um, I'm of the ilk of keeping the moss, less to mow.

Otherwise I'd hand pull the moss, it's not hard to do.

Reese
 

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My guess is that the soil is or has become acid. Moss cannot "drive out" grass. Moss can survive in an acid environment, grass struggles.
Low ph (acid) soil makes it difficult for plants to absorb nutrients, so the reaction of the grass could be one or the other: acid soil or low nutrients. So, the fix is to dump some lime on the soil. Feed Stores and Garden Stores carry it. If you have a choice get Calcium Carbonate instead of Magnesium Carbonate, but both will work.
Decomposing wood chip or sawdust will rob the soil of nitrogen. I'm wondering what changes you've made that caused this change?
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
didn't do a thing...no changes. so...can I put the lime on now, or should I wait til spring?

I don't love mowing either...but do love the green grass in front of the house. :)
 

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The problem is not enough sunlight. A few hours in the afternoon is nowheres near what is needed. Get a book on tree trimming and find out about "sun flecking". It may help.
 

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It takes lime awhile to pull the ph back to base. I'd put it on now, so by spring it will be ready.
 

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We have fairly acidic soil thanks to the pollution that comes down as acid rain from the mid-west. The result is our fields have a low pH. Boosting the pH by spreading lime or wood ash dropped the amount of moss in the fields, increased the grasses and eventually even the neutrality loving clovers increased. It did take a few years.

Cheers

-Walter
Sugar Mountain Farm
in the mountains of Vermont
http://SugarMtnFarm.com/blog/
http://HollyGraphicArt.com/
http://NoNAIS.org
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
so..wood ash is also good? I have that daily now...this could be good!

oh..and Walter...I love your blog. I am a faithful reader. :)
 

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Mamita,

Yes, wood ash is great for soil conditioning. In addition to helping to raise the pH of acid soils towards a more hospitable neutral pH the wood ash also has trace nutrients. I find the best way to spread it is to take a dry pail of ash out on the snow during the late winter and using a scoop I toss it to the wind. Stand up wind, of course, of the area you want to ash. This spreads the ash down wind of me darkening the snow which causes the snow to melt faster - my own private little global warming. This can open up fields and gardens by as much as a month earlier in the spring.

On the other hand, if you were in a place with alkaline soil, Arizona perhaps, then this would not be ideal since what people there try to do is lower the pH driving it toward neutral again.

Cheers,

-Walter
in Vermont
 

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Wood ash has some value as a fertilizer, but does not contain nitrogen. Because of the presence of calcium carbonate it acts as a liming agent and will deacidify the soil increasing its pH
 
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