Danielle Kennell

Mosscaping: Ready for the Challenge?

Fancy the challenge of transforming an unwanted area outside, into a vibrant natural space for both yourself and living invertebrates to appreciate? If so then get your coat and boots on, get outside, get creative, most of all, have fun.

What is mosscaping?

Mosscaping is the use of moss to change the appearance of an area. It could act as natural cover for areas that are too damp and shady for other plant life to grow. It is also possible to place moss onto garden sculptures and structures, which will give the outdoor space natural appearance.

Creating this outdoor space and interacting with nature has benefits which the scientific community are showing a keen interest in:

Getting started

Mosscaping a small area will take about 1-3 hours and will give you the understanding of how to utilise moss, giving you ideas like:

  • naturally filling an outside space
  • creating imaginative pieces of moss art ; and
  • making little habitats in pots.

Follow these steps to ‘mosscape’ effectively:

Step 1: Gather your tools; bread board, spatula, bucket, layers of paper/newspaper, and a watering can/hose pipe

Step 2: Find and harvest moss using your spatula and place the harvested moss on paper, which goes into a bucket, lay another piece of paper on top, and repeat

Step 3: Make sure you keep soil that the moss has grown on

Step 4: Find a shady/moist area, sprinkling excess soil found with moss onto area

Step 5: Using a watering can/hose pipe, water moss, making sure it is well watered

Step 6: As the moss is being watered, think about where to place it;

  • design a creation (e.g. - silhouette of an animal or insect)
  • blend moss into the area creating further habitats

Step 7: Using spatula/breadboard, squash each piece of moss increasing their size

Step 8: Place moss on area that you have chosen

If you don’t have an area that is shady and moist, you can create one in a container .

Things to remember when mosscaping:

  • Water the transplanted moss every day for a few weeks to establish
  • Moss can be harvested from areas, such as trees, walls, pavements, or rockeries, making sure you don’t over harvest

Whether you are an experienced gardener, just starting out, or trying this activity as a one-off, it is so important to help nature in any way you can. Using activities like this (mosscaping) or others on outlearn will only be a positive impact on yourself, others and your surrounding environment.

Take a look at our nature-based resources .