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How to Kill Moss

By Melody Dawn ; Updated September 21, 2017

Moss is a small, low-lying plant that usually grows in clumps in moist, shady areas. Moss is a non-vascular plant, which means it contains no root system, leaves or stems. The plants contain specialized vascular systems that transport water throughout the plant. Moss is very adaptable and can grow in many different conditions, which makes it a hard lawn pest to control. Moss will grow in cracks in a driveway or in a woody area next to a creek. Regardless of where it grows, moss is considered a weed.

Apply a moss control product in late winter or early spring. Most copper sulfate products will eliminate moss in most lawns. Follow the instructions exactly as they appear on the container. Apply the moss control on all areas of the grass that have had weed problems or moss problems in the past.

Use a dethatcher on your yard after you have applied the moss control. Move the rake over the moss while using slight pressure to completely move the moss from the soil. A dethatcher or a rake can pull up the moss because of the lack of root system. Dispose of the clumps of moss once they have been pulled up from the yard.

Seed the areas where the moss has been removed with grass seed. The thicker your grass is growing, the more it will discourage the growth of any type of weed. Plant a good ryegrass/ fescue grass blend and cover the seed with a quarter inch of potting soil or potting mix. If the moss is occurring in a shaded area, then seed the area with a shade-tolerant grass. Generally moss will want to grow in an area where the grass has died back. Keep the lawn well seeded to prevent moss from appearing.

Water the grass seed until the seedling begin to come up. Water the new grass seed at least 1 to 2 inches of water per day. Remove any traces of moss that happen to appear.

Test the soil on your lawn to maintain a pH of 6.8 to 7.2 Use an application of lime to raise the pH in the soil. If the pH is too low, try applying a nitrogen fertilizer. Follow the directions on both fertilizers to maintain a proper pH. This will allow the grass to grow at its best, which will smother out any weeds, including moss.


Things You Will Need

  • Grass seed
  • Fertilizer
  • Moss control
  • Water
  • Rake
  • Dethatcher

About the Author


Based in Atlanta, Melody Dawn has been writing business articles and blogs since 2004. Her work has appeared in the "Gainesville Times," "Player's Press" and "USA Today." She is also skilled in writing product descriptions and marketing materials. Dawn holds a Master of Business from Brenau University.