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Hyacinth Plant

Q.Moss in flower bed

Zone Brentwood, MO 63144 | Anonymous added on September 24, 2017 | Answered

I have recently retired and am starting flower beds in my yard. I have a bed on the north side of our garage that is in the shade and damp most of the time. We have had a lot of rain in St. Louis, MO this year. I have started several lilly of the valley plants and there are several surprise lilly’s in the bed now. I want to add bluebells and some spring bulbs like tulips, daffodils and hyacinth. I tested the soil and it is deficient for Potash and adequate for Phosphorus and Nitrogen. The Ph factor is neutral (7.0). I now have moss growing in the bed. Will the moss hurt the other plants I want to put in the bed? Will these plants do well in this bed? About 30 years ago there was a lot of lilly of the valley and ferns in the bed. Construction work destroyed the growth of those plants over the years.

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Answered on September 24, 2017

Moss is usually a poor competitor with other plants, and should not hurt the lilies or other plants you add. What can hurt the plants are the wet and shady conditions of the site, which is what's encouraging the moss to grow. Some lilies do well in these spots but it can be difficult for most lilies to flower in the shade. Foliage plants often do better.

If you want to alter the site, you could build a raised bed on it, which will improve drainiage. Here are some ideas for reducing the wetness:

You could also choose plants that do well in wet and shady spots:

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