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Not many representatives of the flora are distinguished by such a contradictory attitude towards themselves as mosses and lichens. Someone mercilessly fights with them, considering them weed-invaders for settling in trees, they unwittingly destroy them, do not tolerate competition on the lawn. Buddhist monks surrounded themselves with these evergreens millennia ago. Much later in Japan, the first moss gardens appeared, where more than a hundred species of mosses and lichens of various shades grow. They serve as decoration of gardens and parks of London, Rome. In the United States, Do Run Park has specially bred moss for decorative purposes. What kind of plants are these? Is it possible to grow them and create using them garden and park compositions in our conditions?
Mosses and lichens, their cultivation
Mistakes are often called velvety plants, reminiscent of them. In fact, mosses (bryophytes) are small spore creeping or upright plants living in abundantly moist places, on trees, stones.
Almost two tens of thousands of plant varieties delight the eye with an abundance of shades - from almost white to saturated green.
Landscaping takes advantage of such advantages of this plant as:
- ability to absorb moisture well
- a variety of crown shapes and others.
Moss is an indicator of a favorable ecology in the place where it appears. When choosing natural conditions, it never grows, for example, on plastic. Plants delight with their colorful, and most often - bright green twigs almost all year round. You can read the material about the original ideas for giving.
Lichen is a phenomenal symbiosis of fungus and algae, where the fungus provides water and nutrition (like roots), and algae act as leaves, producing chlorophyll and responsible for the respiration of this natural complex. These moisture-loving and very photophilous plants grow slowly, but they live, sometimes for thousands of years. They differ in a variety of colors: pink, white, gray, green. Plants cannot secrete absorbed toxins, therefore they die under adverse ecology.
For decorative purposes, three varieties of these natural phenomena are used:
- scale - similar to spraying,
- leafy - resembling a leaf,
- bushy - bushy, in the form of a bush.
For the cultivation of mosses and lichens in the garden, you can use ready-made plants, bringing them from the forest or buying in a store.
At the same time, you should use these recommendations:
- Ask the seller about the place of collection of plants. It is very important that the conditions of their previous habitation are close to the environment in your garden;
- in coniferous forests, pick up specimens growing on the ground, if you want to transplant them to trees or stones, it is better to look for those that also grow in this way;
- in the city, go in search of exotics in old parks with their wet walls, ancient trees, abandoned fountains or ponds;
- plant moss in shady areas where the sun only happens in the early morning, under trees with openwork crown, it is better to choose the northern and western parts of the garden with acidified soil;
- the lichen perishes from a lack of light, the heat does not matter to him, if only there was enough moisture;
- the plants prepared for planting should be abundantly moistened, lightly sprinkle the planting site with soil brought from the forest, loosening and watering it;
- when planting, they need to be compacted, you can lightly walk along the strip of moss with a skating rink, on the slope it is necessary to strengthen the landing with nails or sticks;
- Do not forget about the increased watering of transplanted specimens;
- lichens of different colors are best planted between mosses, picking small bushes for close proximity with them; for this purpose, branches slightly sprinkled with earth can also be used.
Mosses in the Gardens of the World
To decorate your site with compositions featuring the aforementioned exotics, there are several more ways. You can clear the shaded area on stones, curbs and others, abundantly moistening them at the same time, hoping that the wind will bring plant spores to these places. But it’s better to speed up the process by applying a brush of kaolin, fertilizers and moss elements mixed and diluted with water with brush, to stones, wood, ceramic products, not forgetting the constant watering of their “art”. You can read the material on how to decorate stumps and saw cuts in the country.
There are other recipes for the mixture, for example, this: a glass of homemade yogurt or yogurt diluted with a glass of water is mixed with moss fragments. Then, with a brush, draw the desired shapes with the obtained liquid on the surfaces that need to be decorated.
To create landscape compositions, he recommends using such original ideas:
- To create an imitation of ancient ruins, you can stick moss strips on stones, like walls arranged in a chaotic manner. It is important that the glue was made from flour mash, without synthetic impurities. At the same time, care should be taken to protect the structure from drying out, for a while it is better to cover it with a film, carefully pressing it down, opening only for the period of watering. In a similar way, it is possible to age flowerpots, sculptures, fountains.
- Against the background of mosses and lichens, gray stones brought from the forest ferns, violets, strawberries, sour acid and others look good and natural.
- With the help of moss, you can even create a semblance of paintings, fancifully and randomly planting shreds of a variety of configuration and shades of material mixed with stones, lichens and low colorful flowers.
- The roofs of various buildings will look very picturesque if you plant moss and lichen on them, and the first one can be hung down with “beards” for an additional effect. In such a house in the heat there will be a pleasant coolness.
- On walls or fences, you can create graffiti from a nutrient mixture with the addition of moss of different colors, by applying drawings or inscriptions with a brush.
As you can see, moss and lichen can be successfully used in the creation of landscape decorations. It is good to collect ready-made plants in the forest, park or buy in a special store.
And you can grow material for creativity yourself. It is important not to forget about regular watering of plants.
The conditions and place of landing are also very important for them. After all, without light, the lichen dies, and the moss does not like open areas. Although you can’t call them too capricious, but if you take care of the plants, taking into account all the features of their growth, the effect of this will exceed all expectations. Your imagination, efforts made and these wonderful plants will create unique and exquisite, all year round pleasing with fresh herbs, enchanting works on the site.