Peat Moss

Definition - What does Peat Moss mean?

Peat moss is considered a natural soil amendment or soil replacement. It became widespread among gardeners back in the mid-1900s. Especially used in commercial plots, peat moss, which is derived from aged sphagnum moss bogs, is advantageous to plants since it encourages the roots to latch on to nutrients. It also encourages proper water management and distribution.

Peat moss has also been shown to improve both the consistency and texture of the soil. A very common ingredient in planting soil, peat moss is quite fluffy and lightweight in texture.

MaximumYield explains Peat Moss

A fibrous and dead material, peat moss differs from compost because air is not required for its decomposition. Compared to regular compost, peat moss can take several millennia to form. As a result, this substance is not recognized as a renewable resource. This is why peat moss is often classified as an environmental risk, with some controversy surrounding its use. In fact, according to the International Peat Society, peat bogs exhale carbon for several years, if not decades. The mining process itself has been known to release a notorious quantity of carbon into the earth’s atmosphere.

Because of its acidic pH, peat moss is commonly used to grow plants that thrive in acidic environments, such as camellias and blueberries. Peat moss may be replaced by compost for crops that thrive in an alkaline environment.

Because it releases moisture, peat moss is often found in seed-starting mediums as well as potting soils. This popular grow medium is available in bagged, loose form or tightly packed in canisters.

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