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How To Grow Moss On Bonsai – 3 Unique Methods!

Bonsai trees are one of the most popular forms of gardening globally. These trees take up little space and can be grown indoors too. They are perfect for those looking for a new hobby or art form.

Giving your Bonsai a living forest floor is an easy yet attractive way to give your bonsai tree an extra dimension of beauty. In this article, we will be going over how to grow moss on Bonsai.

Moss is a natural and sustainable way to ensure your bonsai tree stays healthy. It prevents dehydration in bonsai trees and offers protection for the root system. Bonsai moss is a great way to add an extra touch of nature to your home.

You must be looking for advice on creating a balanced environment for your Bonsai. Growing moss on Bonsai is good for its health and adds aesthetic appeal to your garden. We hope this guide helps provide information about how to grow moss on a bonsai.

How To Grow Moss On Bonsai
Kokedama Bonsai – Ulmus parvifolia – via Flickr

Types of Moss for Bonsai Trees

People often mistake moss for a form of algae, but it is not. Mosses are a group of small plants that do not have a true vascular system and therefore cannot draw water from the soil. They reproduce utilizing spores, so moss is an important part of a healthy ecosystem.

Mosses are very important for the nitrogen cycle because they can take in atmospheric nitrogen and store it in their cells. They also absorb other nutrients from the soil and release them into the air through photosynthesis.

Mosses are also important for controlling erosion because they can bind to rocks and prevent them from being washed away by water.

The soil acidity required for various mosses depends on the type of moss. For example, acidic soil is best for certain types of moss, and a higher pH value is best for others. It is best to match the moss pH with the soil before growing it.

The following moss types will help you find the answer to how to grow moss on Bonsai.

Atrichum Moss (Star Moss)

Atrichum moss is a small and delicate moss with a patchy distribution in the northern hemisphere. You can find it in various green to brownish-green shades, and its stems are not very thick.

This moss is best suited to bonsai trees kept in partial shade and can survive in many soil types. The only requirement is for the soil to be quick-draining while providing adequate moisture. Its species which are best suited for bonsai trees include:

  • Big Star moss (other names Catherine’s moss or Common Smoothcap moss)
  • Starburst moss

Bryum argenteum (Silver moss)

Bryum argenteum, commonly referred to as silver moss, is easy to care for moss that thrives in most soil types, including alkaline soils. It is a mass, and fuzzy type of carpet grass, so keep in mind that it will grow sideways more than it will grow up.

Bryum argenteum moss forms a dense mat of whitish-green, leafy stems that can grow over 1 cm. tall and 5 cm. across.

It is sparingly branched, with the leaves being light green above and brown below while they are red in the middle section. This moss has a greater tolerance for dry heat and sunlight than other moss forms.

However, it still prefers some moisture in the soil. It can be the ideal moss type to surround your bonsai tree.

Hypnum cupressiforme (Sheet moss)

Hypnum cupressiforme grows in a dense, creeping sheet across soil and rocks (and terrarium substrates). The stems from the mat structure are covered in overlapping leaves, giving them the appearance of Cypress trees.

These plants are widely available and not too difficult to grow. Ensuring the plant is Hypnum cupressiforme, a type of moss can make them perfect for your bonsai project.

How To Grow Moss On Bonsai 2
Liked the Moss the Best – via Flickr

How To Grow Bonsai Moss – A Step-by-Step Process

Growing the perfect bonsai tree is not an easy task. It takes time, patience, and proper care. Luckily for you, we have some simple instructions to help you out.

There are two simple ways to grow moss for Bonsai. Read on to find out how you can turn your bonsai tree into a bright and colorful one!

Method 1 – Transplanting Moss

To grow moss on your Bonsai, you can transplant it by laying a patch of moss in the location you would like for it to grow. You can take moss specimens of your choice, ready to be transplanted.

Place these patches around your bonsai tree at the base. If you have a large area you would like to cover; the best way is with plugs placed at regular intervals.

Method 2 – Spreading moss

Another way is to spread moss on the desired area. You can do it either by making a moss slurry or moss powder. Moss slurry is made with a fine mixture of buttermilk, water, and moss.

On the flip side, you can make moss powder by drying out the moss in direct sunlight and then crumbling the dried moss between your fingers.

Sprinkle this dust moss on the topsoil of your Bonsai and make sure the soil is moist. Keep sprinkling the moss in intervals for best and quick results.

Method 3 – Using Spores

Cultivating your moss seems like a great idea. You will need to fill an open container with regular potting soil. Any pot may work – this is where your moss will develop.

The next step is buying some moss spores. These are quite cheap, and you can find them online as well. Ensure proper and regular watering of the soil to let the moss grow properly.

Zoo Med New Zealand Sphagnum Moss
  • This lush carpet-like moss can hold moisture up to 20 times its dry weight!
  • Great for live plants and incredibly long-lasting. After other substrates have decomposed, this moss remains usable and can be washed and reused several times.
  • Harvested using sustainable methods to ensure that it will be around for future generations!

Additional Tips

Moss is generally quite easy to grow. However, there are several things you can do to help the moss you add to your tree grow properly. These are:

  • The first step to growing mass on Bonsai is to make sure that the soil is moist. You can do it by watering it every day or every other day, depending on the type of soil you are using. If you are using clay-based soil, you will need to water it more often than peat-based soil.
  • It is best to fertilize your Bonsai plant with a fertilizer that has been specially formulated for these plants. You should fertilize your plant once per month during its active growing season and once every six.
  • Don’t overload the soil with moss spores, as too many particles will start competing, ceasing the growth.
  • Ensure proper and regular watering of the soil to let the moss grow properly.
  • Moss needs plenty of sunlight, so consider moving it to a place where it can get plenty of indirect sunlight.


Growing moss on a bonsai tree is easy and can provide many benefits. The versatile moss will add a natural, beautiful landscape to your Bonsai while providing it with hydration and health.

This article discusses simple and accessible methods to help you grow moss on Bonsai.

We hope it illustrates all the points you needed on how to grow moss on Bonsai. Don’t forget to leave a comment below if you found this information helpful!