Tree Apron Moss
If you're looking for a natural form of weed control, a way to keep out invasive species, or for ground cover, then you may well want to consider tree apron moss ( Anomodon attenuatus). This feathery moss provides an attractive green carpet at the base of trees and rocks. It is also known as "poodle moss" because of it's dense, almost curly appearing "coat."
Tree apron moss does well in growing zones two through seven. It can grow in either full shade or sunlight. Like other mosses, it likes moisture but can thrive for extended periods where little or no water is available. This plant can reach a height of one to two feet when growing on a tree. Growing from ground level, it reaches a height of about one inch. Moss colonies can encompass hundreds of feet regarding width. Mature tree apron moss also has a pleasant scent.
This is a moss that likes acidic environments and does best in soils with a high phosphorous content. The moss is often used to remove toxins from soil and "clean it" for other plants. Able to absorb almost ten times its weight in liquids, tree apron moss has been introduced to flood-prone areas to reduce water damage. When soil and growing conditions are right (moist and well drained), it quickly becomes established in an area. It is an evergreen plant and does not require replanting or extensive maintenance by owners. When exposed to intense light, the moss will turn yellowish brown and appear to "die." However, when reintroduced to more favorable growing conditions, tree apron moss reverts to its standard dark green color.
This moss lends itself well to topiary sculpting. It is also often used in landscaping to mark property boundaries as well as cause aging trees and stone walls have a more attractive appearance. Given this moss's low maintenance needs and flexibility, the tree apron moss is a good one for homeowners to "carpet" their property with.