Most lawns will be home to moss at some point and if left untreated, it can spread – Quickly!
If you have a moss infestation don’t worry, it’s fixable. But in order to treat and remove it effectively, you need the best moss killer for lawns that you can get your hands on.
As a professional greenkeeper, I’ve always had my ‘go-to’ moss killer. That said, there are so many products on the market so I thought I’d test a few of them out to see which is the best moss killer for lawns at home.
In this article, I also offer some advice about how best to use moss killer. So, by the end of your battle with it, you’ll have a virtually moss free lawn.
Killing moss without addressing the issues that caused it to grow in the first place will result in the moss growing back.
If your lawn is suffering from an infestation of moss, the killing and removal of it should be just one step in a partial or complete renovation of your lawn.
A quick comparison
Pro-Kleen Iron Sulphate - Best Liquid Moss Killer
Evergreen Mosskil - Best Granular Moss Killer
The Best Moss Killer with Reviews
Here's some of the best moss killers on the market:
1. Pro-Kleen Iron Sulphate - Best Liquid Moss Killer
- Easy to Mix and Apply
- Starts to Kill Moss Within Hours
- It Also Hardens Turf and Green Grass
- Helps prevent lawn disease
- Very easy to use!
Iron Sulphate (or Ferrous Sulphate) is the traditional moss control product of greenkeepers. It’s the moss killing component of most killer products and lawn sand.
Pro-Kleen iron sulphate killer is excellent!
It comes as a powder or very fine granules that you mix with water. dissolves well for easy application through a watering can or knapsack sprayer. a
You’ll see the moss turn black within a few hours of applying it and in 7-10 days it’ll have fully killed moss.
This does depend on how thick the moss is though. If your lawn is really thick with moss, it’s often better to rake out as much as you can and apply this ferrous sulphate to kill whatever is left before raking again.
When applied in smaller doses, Iron Sulphate can also be used as a liquid fertiliser to give the grass a boost of green colour, and also harden the turf against the stresses of winter.
You can also use it to suppress the growth of moss over the winter and prevent overtaking your lawn. This makes dealing with it in spring much easier.
Just make sure the grass is wet before applying it. Otherwise, it won’t be as effective.
Overall, this is a brilliant product which I always keep in my shed.
2. EverGreen MossKil - Best Granular Moss Killer
- Easy to Spread
- Moss Blackens in 7 days
- Helps build strong roots
- Use from April to September
Like I said earlier in this article, there aren’t many granular moss killers on the market. The only one I could find for home use is Evergreen’s Mosskil.
As it’s a granular product there’s no need to dissolve it in water. You can either spread very easily it by hand or with a spreader.
Granular moss killers do take longer to kill moss than liquid products so you’ll need to give it a good 10-14 days to penetrate the moss as deeply as possible.
As such, I’d recommend raking your lawn before applying this product and then raking again a couple of weeks after application.
Unlike pure iron sulphate, Evergreen Mosskil contains Nitrogen which causes the grass to grow. This means you should apply it between April and September when the grass is actively growing.
Don’t apply it in winter, the Nitrogen will cause growth surge which can weaken the grass and make it more susceptible to disease and stress.
Overall, Evergreen Moss Kill is a decent product. It’s easy to spread and it does work although I still prefer Iron Sulphate.
3. VivaGreen Moss Off - Best Pet Friendly Moss Killer
- Safe to Use Around Kids and Pets
- Use it as Often as You Want
- Can Apply it All Year Round
If you’re looking for a pet friendly moss killer, then VivaGreen’s Moss Off is the best moss killer for you.
While regular moss killers use high doses of iron to kill moss, Moss Off is a completely natural and chemical-free product.
It contains natural oils and starches that coats moss in an invisible, biodegradable film. This coating stops the moss from drawing in moisture from the surface or air. And because moss doesn’t have roots, it can’t draw moisture from the ground either. As a result, it dies.
When using Moss Off you’ll notice the moss doesn’t turn black as it dies. Instead, it turns brown. This is because there is no chemical process or reaction.
The fact that there are no chemicals in it also means you can use it all year round, whenever you like. You can also use it as often as you want too.
Although you can apply chemical products like Iron Sulphate multiple times a year, you should always leave a gap of several weeks. This is because you can alter the pH of your soil if you use it too often.
Also, high concentrations of iron in chemical products can cause orange or brown staining to paths and driveways. This staining is permanent.
Moss Off does take a while longer to work than a chemical product. The company behind the product, VivaGreen openly admit this.
If you like to work fast this could frustrate you but in my opinion, the benefits far outweigh the extra time it takes to kill moss.
Also, when compared to a product like Iron Sulphate, Moss Off is pretty expensive. That said, if you’re concerned about the health of your kids and pets, the environment and you’d prefer not to risk ruining other areas of your garden by staining them with Iron Sulphate, I’d say it’s well worth the extra cost.
Why Do I Need to Use a Moss Killer?
The most common procedure for getting rid of moss is to apply a moss killer, wait for a couple of weeks and then rake it out.
But why apply a moss killer in the first place, why not just rake it out?
Well, there are a couple of reasons;
Raking Untreated Moss Can Spread it to Other Areas of Your Lawn
Let’s say you have areas or patches of your lawn that have moss in them and areas without it.
If you rake it while it’s alive you better collect every bit of it. If not, or if you drop it or rake it into an area that’s not infected, it can establish itself quickly.
The result is that you spend all your time chasing the moss around your lawn, never getting it under full control.
Moss is Easier to Remove When it’s Dead
When you apply a moss killer, it desiccates the moss, breaking it down, killing it and turning it black.
Dead moss has no strength which means the moss is much easier to remove than it would be if it was alive.
How to Choose the Best Moss Killer For You and Your Lawn
There are many different types of moss killers on the market and it comes in a range of different ways.
So how do you decide which is the best moss killer for your lawn?
Here are a few things to consider;
How Much Moss is in Your Lawn?
Moss killer comes in a range of different products.
For example, you can buy dedicated moss killers or you can buy lawn feed and weed products that contain moss killer.
So take a look at how much moss inhabits your lawn. If it has been completely taken over by moss, use a dedicated moss killer.
If there is only a little bit then chances are you can use a feed, moss and weed killer if that’s what you prefer.
As a groundskeeper, my philosophy has always been to fertilise the lawn, kill weeds and deal with moss separately. So I always use a dedicated moss killer.
Liquid vs. Granular Moss Killer?
Like different types of lawn feeds, moss killer comes in both granular or liquid forms.
Liquid or soluble moss killers generally work faster than granular products but tend to be lighter and only kill the top layer of moss.
Granular products, on the other hand, work slower but are heavier so are more successful a killing the lower sections of thick moss. That said, there are very few granular products that are dedicated moss killers. They’re generally part of a lawn feed product.
Do You Prefer Not to Use Chemicals?
There are a number of reasons to not want to use a chemical product on your lawn.
Three good reasons include;
- Classing yourself as an organic gardener
- Having kids and pets that like to use the lawn, and
- Not wanting to alter the pH balance of the soil with chemical products
Pet Friendly moss killer takes longer to work because they’re free of chemicals. However, there’s one product that works very well.
It’s called Moss Off.
Because it’s a natural product you can use it often as you want, kids and pets are safe and you won’t risk making the soil overly acidic.
How to Use Lawn Moss Killer to Get the Best Results
The best way I have found to rake out a much moss as possible first, before using a moss killer to get the rest;
Rake out the dead moss with either a springbok rake or powered lawn rake. If you use a springbok rake, expect hard work and blisters. Wear gloves with talc in them will reduce the chance of getting blisters ever so slightly.
Rake the lawn twice, each time in a different direction to remove as much moss as possible.
Apply your chosen moss killer and give it 2 weeks to kill the rest of the moss. You’ll see it get blacker and blacker as it starts to die and break down.
Rake the lawn again to remove the remaining dead moss.
This should remove 90% – 95% of the moss in your lawn. Now you can get to work on other jobs like scarifying, aerating or re-seeding.
There are a lot of moss killers on the market. Some of them are excellent and some not so much.
Take Evergreen’s Mosskil.
It’s made it onto my of best moss killers for lawns as the best granular product but that’s only due to a lack of options and it definitely wouldn’t be my first choice.
Pro-Kleen’s Iron Sulphate and VivaGreen’s Moss off are both excellent and I’d choose either one of them over the Mosskil.
Oh, and when you’ve invested in the best moss killer for you and your lawn, you should read this article: The Ultimate Guide to Removing Moss From Your Lawn and Prevent it Returning.