Wednesday, July 3, 2013

Spanish Moss ..the Epitome of Southern Nostalgia

Envision a Southern Plantation Home...do you see Spanish Moss?
Yesterday, I visited my husband's family home that had since been turned into a museum...my MIL grew up here.  The rest of the pictures and why I was here will be a later post.  But I married here as well.  Point is...Spanish Moss and old South seem to go hand in hand.

 I LOVE SPANISH MOSS...so much, that if they said if you had only one plant you could have for the rest of your life (between roses and Spanish moss) which would you choose?  I would pick Spanish Moss...why?

 No maintenance.  Instantly adds character.  For the record, I have lived in many states in the South (AL, FL, GA, MS, LA)....and I grew up around spanish moss on many very alive trees.  It wasn't until I put spanish moss on my own trees that I truly felt "at home".  Most article say that spanish moss is "southern gothic" which is even better!  I love living in Alabama..(other than the intense football rivalry...I don't follow football).
There are many myths I have heard about spanish moss...they kill trees, they have bugs, they are parasites...
I want to say there are some things you should an should not do with spanish moss, but out of all my gardens it's the one thing that truly gives my gardens "personality".  My biggest mentor, Ms. Dina, doesn't like it.  But I won't hear of it...it's as southern to me as grits.

I used to have a job travelling Mississippi.  Natchez is known for it beauty, and it had very manicured gardens, but ironically I loved a town called Port Gibson...which there was not a flower to be seen..but smothered in Spanish Moss....and to this day I think it's the prettiest Mississippi town there is.

Now, I have been growing Spanish Moss for a year.  To transplant, all you have to do is "hang it like tinsel." I, only, put it on mature oaks.  It's not a parasite...but there are some things you have to take note.

  • Don't put it on young trees
  • It makes branches heavy so I prefer oaks with mature limbs that can stand the weight
  • It can get thick and block leaves which is why you want mature tree


Moss by the creek


Moss on Savannah Bird Girl

Before you knock it, try it.....I promise..if you live in the South (and live on a big property), you will wonder how you lived without it!

More information on Spanish Moss,
Links on Spanish Moss





3 comments:

NellJean said...

My husband's aunt, who lived just down the highway, was very emphatic about making sure no Spanish moss got started on the pecan trees in her yard. I doubt it would have marched down that far. It stops up at the far end of the field north of our house. The closer toward the creek you go, the more Spanish Moss you see. The old trees around the pond site are draped with it, very romantic-looking.

I would take roses. Roses have scent and color. My husband insists that Spanish Moss harbors redbugs. I don't get close enough to test that theory.

Janie Jurkiewicz said...

I suppose it's one of those things you either love or hate....in Louisiana and Mississippi we are smothered in it...in Georgia, I only saw it in the Savannah region.....I love it...and it romantic looking ...yes, it can grow amongst trees, but it isn't so fast growing that you can't keep it off trees...either way, I love them....they don't require maintenance...or very little...so the reason why I picked moss..is because they are year round...and one day I may not have the energy for roses...probably at 90...

Port City said...

I live in Mobile now and I have always loved Spanish Moss. There are some streets where the trees are covered in it, however its hard to find in most parts of town, I wonder why that's the case. Driving down government street would be much more scenic if the trees were draped in Spanish moss. Bienville Square could use some too! Did there used to be more Spanish moss in the city? I heard from somebody that it started dying off around here. I was also curious as to where your Mother in Law's house/museum is.
Thanks