I get lots of questions about Spanish moss from my clients, so here’s some good information for you:
“Did You Know…contrary to popular belief, Spanish moss (Tillandsia usneoides) is not a parasite? It’s actually an epiphyte, meaning it gets all of its nutrients from the air and rainwater. It can sometimes damage the host tree by over-shading the leaves, thus reducing photosynthesis, or by weighing down and breaking the branches. This is usually in host trees that are stressed for some other reason, thereby having a more open canopy (less leaves). Spanish moss actually has an important role in Florida’s ecology. Many animals use it for protection, taking cover in the thick masses. Insects love to hide out in the moss, too. Spanish moss is also a significant component of the nests of several species of birds, including the parula warbler and the Baltimore oriole.” Click link for additional info: Spanish Moss Info
One more interesting tidbit: Did you know that Spanish moss is related to pineapples?? Yep, they’re in the same family.
Happy digging in the dirt …
Jeanni, Gibbs, and Ziva