Monday, July 22, 2013

Moss and Algae = Slippery Sidewalks


Living in the tropics, people are often plagued with unsightly and dangerous moss and algae growing on driveways and pathways around their homes.  When the rain stops, the green growth will dry but will regenerate again with the next rain. 

There are many different products on the market to help clean up the driveway.  Look at the active ingredients on the label; most products will contain bleach,  soap, or a form of copper. Be sure to follow the directions on the label.  Most products are applied and remain for a while and then washed off with a hose or scrapped with the help of a shovel.  At times the buildup is so great that a power washer is needed. Bleach is often recommended at one cup per gallon of water. 

When using copper and bleach, there is always the potential for these products damaging desired plants either from the direct spray or from the solution saturating the soil. Take caution when spraying near desirable plants. The damage is lessened in high rainfall areas through the leeching action of the rain.

Another option is to use one cup of vinegar per gallon of water; bleach is sometimes added to fortify the solution. An application of Roundup herbicide will kill the algae and moss, but the plant residue needs to be scrapped away.