Wednesday, May 20

Carpet of Moss

One of the things we often hear from guests as they return from a walk in our woods is they are amazed by the moss.

"So that's what they mean when they say 'a carpet of moss'!" I've heard more than one guest exclaim. And it's true, there are sections of forest where the moss stretches out lush and soft over clearings, under pines, around rocks and boulders. In places, you feel like you're going to sink in up to your ankles.

When you take a closer look—and you can't resist bending down to run your hand over it—you see there's not just one moss growing, there's a lot going on under our feet.

There are mosses that look like starbursts; lichens that look like brillo pads; ground covers that resemble mini palm trees, tiny shrubs, or long fuzzy pipe-cleaners.

The colours range from pale pastel green, to blue-grey, to brilliant lime to deep emerald. The forest floor is like a patchwork quilt.

All this is going on just a few minutes from our back door. In this section of the woods, around the start of our trails, the conifers are deep and dense, leaving very little room for leaf-dropping deciduous trees. It's perfect for the mosses and other ground cover.

Once we get further back on our trails we get into the hardwood section of the property where the moss doesn't have a chance on the ground under the thick cover of fallen leaves. Here, it clings to tree trunks and rocks instead.

As ever, I'm afraid pictures just can't do it justice, so you'll just have to see for yourself.

Visit Fern Glen Inn B&B for some hiking or walks in the woods. We'll roll out the green carpet for you!

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