MOSS: The Ultimate High-Vibe & Low-Maintenance Plant for Your Feng Shui Home or Office
Moss has been having a moment lately. And it is more than deserving of it. In fact it's possible that moss is the most #trendworthy plant there ever was!
Moss is the ideal plant in Feng Shui because of it's beauty, simplicity and strength. In this blog we'll examine moss from a lens of this ancient philosophy and review how moss can be brought into your home to attract positivity and prosperity.
But first, let's "nerd-out" a bit...
Fascinating Facts About Moss
Ancient. Mosses are some of the oldest and most primitive types of plant, dating back to prehistoric times. Moss originated in water but transitioned to land 350 million years ago. We can still see evidence of this in young moss with their algae-like appearance
Widespread. There are over 22,000 recorded species of moss worldwide - inhabiting nearly every ecosystem on earth. Moss thrive in the widely-available microclimate called the 'boundary layer ' where the land meets the air. Here it can successfully trap heat, water vapor and carbon dioxide. As such they can live on trees, logs, rocks, and even absorbent urban surfaces like roofs, walls or pavement. There is even a species which grows on animal droppings, and one that in a cave!
Mysterious. Despite moss being so prevalent and historic there are no common names for the majority of moss species. As such, moss enthusiasts/scientists called 'bryologists" have been known to make up their own names!
Simple. Moss is unbelievably simple it it's form. It has no flowers, fruits, seeds, or roots - just a stem, leaves, and a sometimes a seta/stalk for reproduction. The require the bare minimum of wind, moisture (in the form of rain, dew or droplets), or insects or small animals to deliver sperm to egg for fertilization.
Adaptable. Mosses couldn't compete for sunlight that taller plants could so they evolved to life in the shade. They are one of the only plants which absorb the lowest wavelengths of light- filtered and dappled through the tree canopy.
Self-Sufficient. Moss have a wide range of sexual/reproductive habits depending on the species and based on the environmental conditions. For example, they can change their gender depending on density /population around them.
Resilient. Moss are extremely stress-tolerant, evolving to withstand extreme conditions like wildfire, freezing temperatures, and drought. They can lose 98% of their moisture and miraculously still survive!
Indigestible. Moss is not a popular dietary choice for most wildlife as it has almost no nutritional value and a bitter taste. However it has been noted that bears may consume them to deliberately cause constipation during hibernation!
Sensitive. Moss are consider an 'indicator species'- sensitive to air pollution and other contaminants.
Useful. Historically moss were used to in a variety of domestic ways. Examples include stuffing cracks between log homes, lining boots for insulation, folding into diapers and sanitary napkins, wiping and cleaning fish, steaming edible plants, and dressing wounds.
"Moss grows where nothing else can grow... It is a resurrection engine. A single clump of mosses can lie dormant and dry for forty years at a stretch, and then vault back again into life with a mere soaking of water."
The Tao of Moss
In Chinese, Feng shui translatesas “wind” and “water," which are coincidentally the two basic things moss rely on to survive. As we know feng shui is based on the Tao, the way of nature. It is a philosophy and set of principles meant to reflect and replicate the order of the natural world, harnessing the energy forces which create balance, harmony and flow between an individual and their environment.
Moss are ideal for your feng shui home. Plants and living things are one of the 9 Universal Cures which add balance and harmony to a space, regardless of their placement. Houseplants, especially those with bright colors and curved shapes, are said to absorb negative energy and attract abundance and good fortune.
Because moss lays flat and green, it creates the ideal environment for Chi to circulate and flow in your space. It also holds an immortal, transient quality- reflective of the power of nature as a whole.
As such, incorporating moss into your home's decor and design can bring in more...
Health & Longevity
Wealth & Prosperity
Happiness & Warmth
You have to experience the magic of moss to believe it for your self!
“There is an ancient conversation going on between mosses and rocks, poetry to be sure. About light and shadow... past and present, softness and hardness, stillness and vibrancy, Yin and Yang.”
Robin Wall Kimmerer
The Benefits of Moss in Your Feng Shui Spaces
There are several environmental benefits to moss, which make it the natural choice for the eco-conscious gardener, wellness-minded homemaker or feng shui enthusiast.
Clean Air. Moss gardens can improve quality of indoor air through a process known as biofiltration - absorbing toxins and harmful microscopic particles and releasing fresh carbon dioxide in its place.
Energy Savings. Moss retain temperatures well, so an insulating moss wall can help cut costs on heating and cooling bills, also helping the environment in a broader way.
Low Maintenance. If you've got a 'black thumb', then moss is your dream plant as it requires minimal light, water and attention. This is a perk from a feng shui perspective because it will not be a drain to your personal Chi.
Beauty & Aesthetics. Moss makes a timeless, classic and sophisticated addition to any outdoor or indoor space. Because moss stay vivid and green year-round, they hold a consistent quality of freshness and vitality. It can sooth and relax with it's elegant simplicity, but also make a space "pop" with new life.
Bringing the Outdoors In
There are a variety of ways that you can incorporate moss into your home or office. These include moss gardens, moss lawns, and green roofs for outdoor spaces, and living walls, terrariums or centerpieces for indoors.
Having a moss garden or terrarium is a simple way to bring a little bit of nature into your home - especially if you've foraged the moss yourself. These moss-scapes are easy and affordable to make and easy to care for.
OUTDOOR MOSS HARVESTING
Commercial moss harvesting is an extremely corrupt practice and the peat moss industry is "anti-feng shui" so it's important to be mindful of where you source your moss. It's always best to find your moss directly in nature yourself so that you can have an understanding of what it naturally thrives in, and so that it is transplanted in the most efficient, respectful and sustainable way possible. Remember to...
Avoid trespassing or taking moss from protected public lands
Practice selective harvesting, taking small palm-sized discs of moss from multiple different spots in order to preserve the integrity of large patches
Scoop the full root structure underneath, which can be an inch or more thick.
Transport the moss carefully - ideally keeping it flat and protected on a plate or something similar
INDOOR MOSS CARE
The key to keeping your moss thriving is making sure to give it the proper care, which is probably different from your other houseplants. Here are the essentials tips and tricks to keeping your moss healthy and happy.
Soil. Mosses differ from most plants in that they prefer their soil packed and firm instead of light and fluffy. You'll also want to take soil Ph into account when it comes to picking the right type of foundation for you moss to grow on. Aim to replicate the same alkaline, acidity or neutrality that you originally found it.
Water. Mosses thrive in damp environments, so it's important to make sure that keep the soil consistently moist for your plant. To keep your moss healthy, simply mist the plant regularly with a spray bottle. If it appears to be yellowing more and drying and give it a good watering once a week instead. Also be sure to use filtered water as opposed to tap, since tap water can contain too much chlorine and might turn your mosses brown.
Light. Most moss love shaded areas, but there are some varieties of mosses that prefer to have more sunlight. That's why the key to deciding where to place your moss is to understand the ideal conditions under which your moss naturally thrives in nature. You can research your a bit of particular variety, or simply play scientistic= experimenting with different placements around the house to see how well it's doing.
Growth. If parts of your arrangement begin to look shabby, overgrown, or even moldy (common in terrariums with too must moisture) it might be time to prune away parts. You can re-forage at any time and swap/replace chunks with fresh new moss as needed.
Remember, it's imperative from a feng shui perspective for your moss to THRIVE in your home. Decaying, dried or dying plants hold stagnation and negative Chi, whereas new growth will bring new opportunities. So stay patient, but also realistic in that your home or lifestyle may not be a perfect energetic fit for certain types of moss.
Add extra special touches of feng shui charm (i.e Chi) by placing crystals, shells, feathers or other natural elements with your moss.
Create a mini portable moss terrarium to use as a jewelry, or for the car or travel. Simply place an individual moss plant in a small glass vial. Once a month, use an eyedropper to add a single drop of water to the vial, then blow into the vial to disperse the moisture and air. Put a cork stopper tightly on top and -Voila! Feng shui on the go!
Many of the same tips apply to indoor moss as outdoor care (soil, water, light). However, to transplant moss successfully for outdoor gardening remember the 3 W's from Asheville's own Mossin Annie: "Water, Walk and Weed."
Few things represent the principles of Feng Shui more powerfully than moss. They are beings of balance, beauty, simplicity, strength. Moss will be here long after we're gone. And that is something to admire and respect. The transcient and immortal quality that moss holds - able to survive in so many conditions and environments- is a metaphor for Chi in our lives: the vital energy of nature that will always find a way.
Erin is a certified feng shui consultant, energy healer, wellness coach and holistic growth strategist.