What is Sphagnum Moss?
Sphagnum moss is a type of live moss that grows on top of bogs. It is different from peat moss, which is harvested from under the layer of sphagnum moss. The plants are pale green to deep red and form dense clumps. They have no anchor roots and grow up to 12″ tall. The leaves of sphagnum moss are like sponges, capable of absorbing up to 20 times their weight in water and retaining it for a great length of time. Sphagnum moss is a renewable resource that is more quickly renewed than peat moss.
Sphagnum Moss vs. Peat Moss
While sphagnum moss and peat moss are both obtained from bogs, they are different products. Peat moss is the decaying matter that is harvested under the layer of sphagnum moss. It is often used as a soil conditioner or amendment. Sphagnum moss, on the other hand, is the live moss that grows on top of bogs. It is often used for growing orchids, as a top dressing for potted plants, or as a liner for hanging baskets. Sphagnum moss is a renewable resource, while peat moss is not.
Sphagnum Moss for Orchids
Sphagnum moss is a popular growing medium for orchids because of its water-retention properties. The leaves of sphagnum moss are capable of absorbing and retaining a large amount of water, making it an ideal choice for orchids that need consistent moisture. Additionally, sphagnum moss is a sterile medium, which can help prevent the growth of harmful bacteria and fungi that can harm orchids. It also helps to promote air circulation around the orchid’s roots, preventing root rot.
How to Grow Sphagnum Moss
Sphagnum moss is easy to grow and can be propagated by division. Start by filling a container with a mixture of peat moss and perlite. Soak the mixture until it is thoroughly moistened, and then scatter sphagnum moss spores over the surface. Cover the container with plastic wrap to create a humid environment, and place it in a warm, bright area. In a few weeks, the spores will germinate, and you will have a new crop of sphagnum moss.
Why Buy Sphagnum Moss
Sphagnum moss is a renewable resource that is different from peat moss. It is a popular growing medium for orchids due to its water-retention properties and sterile nature. Sphagnum moss can be grown easily by propagation and is a great addition to any gardener’s toolkit.