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How To Control Algae and Mossalgae and moss

We usually enjoy seeing greenery if we own a garden or lawn, however, there are green plant life that often grows where it is not wanted such as moss and algae. These plants are usually an ugly eyesore when they are found growing on a pond or on concrete and other areas where they shouldn’t be.

Algae and moss do serve it’s purpose in certain areas, especially as food for fished when growing on ponds but too much algae and moss can become unattractive if you are trying to keep a well-kept yard.

Information about Moss and Algae

  • Moss are tiny plants which consist of leaves and fine thread-like stems so small they can be one cell long. When very many of these plants are growing rapidly together it looks as if they are painted on, especially when they are growing on rocks and trees.  Moss is able to reproduce quickly via spores which travel by wind.

    Moss as an uncanny ability to develop it’s own food so they are not parasitic to your lawn or zap your desired plant life of nutrients. Moss will form a thick green mat on the soil surface. If you see lots of moss in your lawn, this is likely because the conditions are favorable for the moss, but not the grass. The moss takes up the space left by dead grass.

  • Algae is a plant organism similar to moss that gross primary on bodies of water. Commonly known as “pond scum” because of its sliminess and tendency to create mats which sometimes completely cover ponds, this plant is primitive and differs from most plants which grow on lakes and ponds because it doesn’t have any roots, leaves or other common plant structure.

    There are two main categories of algae: planktonic and filamentous algae. Planktonic algae is a microscopic type of algae that is the most common and is made up of tiny free-floating algae which gives ponds an unpleasant green color. If grown in small amounts, it can be a positive to your pond or lake as it can improve water quality.

Algae and moss can be difficult weeds to get rid of if you don’t have the right products or control approach in place. Some landowners just grow to embrace the unwanted greens. If you aren’t one of those types, you can get rid of algae or moss with algae and moss control chemicals. Solutions Pest & Lawn can give you helpful tips on how you can get rid of algae and moss from your pond, lake, or lawn with professional quality algaecides and moss killer herbicides.

Browse our professional DIY algae and moss control products below. If you have any questions or concerns, please call us at 800-479-6583, live chat with us on our website, email us at askapro@solutionsstores.com. Our knowledgeable lawn care experts are standing by and ready to help you.

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How to Get Rid of Moss and/or Algae: 3 Step Solution

Whether you have moss or algae or both, removal of either of these plants can be difficult and frustrating. However, you can successfully eliminate moss or algae no matter where it is growing on your property with the correct control approach and effective professional grade algaecide and herbicide products. Follow the steps below if you want to control algae or moss the DIY way.


Step 1: Before getting into purchasing chemical treatments and spraying away, it is first necessary to conduct a detailed inspection and analysis of the body of water or land that will be treated for the algae or moss. If treatment for algae, it is important to take into account the fishes and aquatic life that use the body of water as a habitat as well as the other vegetation in the water that is desirable and vital to the ecosystem before applying chemicals.

The same is the case for moss on land, taking note of animals and the environment which may be affected by chemical control. Moss growth is usually due to issues with your lawn soil whether it be due to too much shade, acidity of soil, excess moisture due to poor drainage or even compacted soil. Finding out what the issue is and doing your best to fix it will go a long way.


Step 2: Depending on whether you have moss or algae, seek out chemical products that will be the best for your lawn or pond. For moss, we recommend using Quicksilver Herbicide. For algae, we recommend an aquatic herbicide product like  Cutrine Plus Algaecide either in its liquid or Granular form or Diquat Dibromide Aquatic Herbicide.If you are not sure what to get, get in touch with us at askapro@solutionsstores.comor call us at 800-479-6583 and we will be happy to give you recommendations according to your issue and your property.


Step 3: Apply the chemical treatment to the water or your lawn using a backpack sprayer or hand-pump sprayer. If treating for algae, exercise precaution and treat your pond in sections to prevent the chemical from harming other aquatic life in the water. We want to emphasize that unless something is done to reduce the nutrient richness in the water or pond, this algae or moss will continue to be a returning problem.


More Information About Moss and Algae

Algae and moss are plants that are often confused with one another. Both plants can grow either on water or on land and can be a nuisance plant that can cosmetically affect the appearance of lawns or of pond surfaces.


If mosses are present in your lawn, it indicates that conditions are not favorable for the growth of a healthy stand of grass but are favorable for the growth of mosses. The conditions that favor mosses over grass include: excessive shade, acidic soil, poor drainage, compacted soil, overwatering, low soil fertility or any combination of these issues.


Algae are unicellular or multicellular, threadlike green plants that can form a dense coating or scum over the soil surface. This slimy scum can develop a rough looking black crust on the soil when it becomes dry, and will act as a barrier to water movement into the soil. Algal scum can be found on soils that are waterlogged and compacted, especially during sunny, warm and humid conditions


Differences Between Moss and Algae

Let’s quickly go through what are the characteristics between moss and algae that differentiate them from one another and eliminate any confusion.



  • ◙ Known as thalophytes meaning they are a plant which do not have any roots, stems or leaves.

  • ◙ All species of algae are aquatic plants either fresh water or marine. If algae is growing on land or turf, it’s because there is an excess water issue.

  • ◙ All species of algae are autotrophic which means they have the ability to manufacture their own organic food with the help of sunlight and chlorophyll.

  • ◙ The way they sexually reproduce is through isogamous and anisogamous conjugation or oogamous fertilization.

  • ◙ Depending on pigmentation from photosynthesis algae can be classified as Chlorophyta (green algae), Phaeophyta(brown algae), Rhodophyta(red algae) etc.



  • ◙ From the evolutionary point of view they are higher on the ladder algae and most likely evolved from them.

  • ◙ Some mosses possess root like, stem like and leaf like organs but these are not true roots, stem and leaves.

  • ◙ All of them require a wet or damp habitat but will refuse to grow in water. There are no marine or salt water mosses or their relatives.

  • ◙ All of them are autotrophic in nutrition like algae.

  • ◙ The process of sexual reproduction is higher than that of algae and it is always oogamous fertilization(male and female gametes are very distinct from each other like those in animals).

  • ◙ All the mosses and the likes are put in a single division Bryophyta and all of them are referred to as the bryophytes.

  • ◙ Mosses and liverworts are the examples.


Benefits of Moss and Algae

As surprising as it may be to people, there are some benefits to having moss or algae on your lawn or lake. In fact, some people embrace moss on their lawns and prefer to grow it instead of grass. This is usually because it takes less work to maintain it’s greenness and less work overall for upkeep. Moss can grow on compacted soil and even on rocks and it needs no fertilizer. As long as it has moisture it will be green.


When it comes to algae, if not growing in abundance, it can bring much benefits to pond waters. If a private pond owner were to overlook the fact that it may not be aesthetically pleasing to see all that slimy green algae in water you prefer to be clean and clear, they may see the good that algae brings to the aquatic ecosystem in the water.


For instance, one of the best benefits algae brings to pond waters is nourishment for fish. In aquariums, people have to provide fish with food, but in natural habitats, fish can eat the algae in pond water to satisfy their diets. The algae in pond water makes a great natural and healthy food for fish. Often the algae in pond water are better for fish then the average fish food you would find in stores. The fact that it is green means that it is chock full of essential nutrients which fish need to be healthy.


Another benefit which algae brings to pond waters or lawns on which they grow is that it produces oxygen. Many ponds require a filter and some of them also have artificial pumps to add oxygen, but algae in pond water is a natural way to keep sufficient oxygen in the pond for the fish. If all of the algae in pond water was to be removed, pond fish may not get sufficient oxygen that is vital for their survival.


Many pond owners worry that algae in pond water promotes bacteria. On the contrary, there is a type of algae in pond water that actually promotes the presence of good bacteria. This type of algae in pond water serves as a home for good bacteria, keeping the supplies of this bacteria in the pond is beneficial.

What people dislike the most about algae in pond water is that it turns the water green and does not look very nice in gardens. It can also be harmful to have too much algae in pond water because algae on the surface of the water can block out sunlight which fishes need.


It is important to find the right balance of algae in pond water to where it still maintains its clean beauty but at the same time is around to help the aquatic life. A good filtration system can keep algae at the proper levels.


Treating Moss Growing on Your Lawn

While moss found on your lawn can be frustrating, it must be understood that the problem with moss on lawns is that it is a symptom of a larger problem on your lawn that must be addressed. The answer is not to kill the moss but to find out why the moss is there to begin with since it is practically a signal that there is something not right about your lawn.


Before rushing out and purchasing herbicides or mass killers that are available you have to consider the reasons why moss is thriving where your grass isn’t which can be a combination of any of the below problems.


  • ◙ A waterlogged lawn (lawn saturated with water)

  • ◙ Lack of nutrients fed to the lawn (usually marked by the appearance of light green grass)

  • ◙ Soil that is too acidic (Must test lawns pH)

  • ◙ Too much shade on the lawn by overhanging trees or large shrubs.

  • ◙ Cutting the grass very close. (Weakens the grass allowing moss to take over)

  • ◙ Drought that is severe enough to kill the grass. Not to be confused with typical browning of grass during hot summers.

  • ◙ Soils that are sandy. This can weaken grass and provide perfect conditions for moss to take over.

  • ◙ Compacted grass. This is usually from lots of foot traffic by kids playing on turf and pets with no efforts to aerate the lawn in the fall.

For the most part, yards that are maintained well, which means they are given sufficient nutrition, cut and aerated appropriately, and thatch has been prevented-- then the issues which result in moss won't happen in any case. Moss can seldom compete against strong nutrient rich grasses  It is permitted to create and take a hold when the grass is weakly developing. Get the grass developing appropriately and the probability is that your garden won't experience the ill effects of moss.


Treating small areas of lawn moss can be carried out with a herbicide specifically labeled to treat moss. After a couple of weeks, you can rake out the dead moss and re-seed. If you need to use a feed for the area, it is better to feed the whole lawn in order to avoid patchiness!


If your home’s lawn has a recurring moss problem, we recommend carrying out the following maintenance tasks, rather than just killing the moss you see.  Unless you tackle the underlying problem, the moss will almost always return with a vengeance.


Seasonal Care and Lawn Moss Treatment

Spring Lawn Moss Treatment

  • ◙ In Spring, apply a Ferrous Sulphate based herbicide to the entire affected area.

  • ◙ Around two weeks later, rake out the dead moss.

  • ◙ Reseed the bare patches.

Summer Lawn Moss Treatment

  • ◙ In the early summertime, apply a lawn fertilizer to get the grass growing again

  • ◙ Mow the lawn properly, regularly, throughout the summer making sure not to cut grass too short

  • ◙ Keep the lawn well watered especially if there are drought conditions to allow the new grass to keep growing.

  • ◙ Take note of any areas of dense shade on your lawn, and try to minimize this if possible.

Autumn Lawn Moss Treatment

  • ◙ In Autumn, give the lawn a good raking or mechanical scarifying, and aerate.

  • ◙ Apply top dressing at this time if the lawn is either uneven, or in need of an organic 'injection'. Particularly useful on weak sandy soils.

  • ◙ Carry out a soil test at some stage in the summer/autumn to assess the acidity of the soil. If in need of adjustment, then lime can be applied in the autumn.

Winter Lawn Moss Treatment

  • ◙ Keep off lawns in the winter months in order to avoid compaction of the surface.

If by the autumn, your lawn is growing well, then most if not all of the moss in your lawn will have been controlled or even eradicated. Further spot treatments may be needed, or maybe even a full treatment for most lawns again the following spring.

Dry Soils and Moss

  • ◙ Dry soil is susceptible to mosses which tend to grow in upright habit with small leaves.

  • ◙ Damp, compacted and waterlogged lawns usually results in mosses that have a creeping habit.

  • ◙ Cushion habit mosses usually state that you are mowing the grass too short.

The maintenance regimen as outlined above for moss in lawns would do much to alleviate a recurring moss problem.


Treating Algae on Your Lawn

If you have little spots of algae, we recommend leaving it be for the benefit of your pond. However, if you have excessive amount of algae, then there are several ways to get rid of algae from your pond water and keep it crystal clear.


A liquid or dry algaecide is the quickest way to get rid of algae to clear up your pond but it can also be the fastest way to kill your fish or your desired pond plants if you are not too careful and don’t preliminarily do your research and inspect your pond before applying algaecide.


If used improperly, a liquid or dry algaecide will chemically destroy algae but this is carried out via harsh chemicals and compounds may put the ecosystem of your pond at risk if you are carelessly applying the product. With an algaecide you can expect to see an overnight improvement but it comes at a price. The algaecide will be very hard on any plants you have in the pond.


Additionally the oxygen supply in the water will plummet. When algae are alive they are living breathing plants that actually add oxygen to the pond water. Upon death it rapidly consumes all the available oxygen in the pond. This is why we usually recommend to apply algaecide in sections and not apply to your entire pond all at once.


If you wish to get rid of algae on your pond with algaecide please read the directions on the label carefully for the proper mixing and application rates as an overdose can quickly harm or kill your plants and fish. When using an algaecide we at Solutions Pest & Lawn suggest that you do something to try and increase circulation in your pond with a waterfall, fountain or aerator. These will replace lost oxygen and hopefully prevent death of fishes in the water.


Lastly, it should be noted that the dead algae will fall to the bottom of the pond and form the food for the next generation of algae.


Shop our Algae and Moss Control Products Now

Feel free to browse our selection of algae and moss control products on this page. If you have any questions or concerns or would like more clarification over what product to use and how to apply it, please do not hesitate to give us a call at 800-479-6583. You can also email us at askapro@solutionsstores.com or live chat with us conveniently on our website.


Solutions Pest & Lawn is here to help you with whatever pest or lawn care problems that creep up onto your property. You will not find better customer service and superior professional grade DIY pest control and lawn care products anywhere else.


For more information on different aquatic weeds, lawn weeds and pests, please refer to our extensive knowledge base and see our wide range of helpful articles.


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