What is a Moss Pole for Plants? Beginners Guide to Using Moss Poles
When paired with the right plant, moss poles can transform a nice-looking house plant into that WOW feature plant that completes your collection. But moss poles don’t work with all indoor plants. In this introduction guide, we’ll cover all the essential aspects of moss poles and how to take your indoor plant collection to the next level.
- Moss poles can change a plant’s appearance by adding height and volume
- Vining indoor plants are the most effective plants to use with moss poles
- Moss poles deliver many benefits to indoor plants
If you have been around the Garden Bench Top before, you’ll know that the geekiest garden things excite us. And even though moss poles don’t sound all that exciting, when we get started, we cannot stop talking about them!
Here is a comprehensive beginner’s guide to everything you need to know about moss poles.
What is a Moss Pole?
But let’s not get ahead of ourselves. Let’s start with the fundamentals…What exactly is a moss pole?
As the name suggests, a moss pole is various types of moss fashioned into a column. It is usually a rigid structure held together by ties or encased in a hollow module with holes peppered along the casing to allow access to the moss.
Using a moss pole with your houseplant encourages it to grow vertically rather than stretching out horizontally and becoming too heavy and cumbersome.
Moss poles can be made from various materials, such as plastic, metal, or even PVC piping (if you choose to go the DIY route).
It is also possible to use different types of mosses with moss poles.
Why Should I use a Moss Pole?
As mentioned in the previous section, a moss pole can help provide your house plants with much-needed stability and structure.
Our immature Monstera Deliciosa is a prime example of a houseplant needing a moss pole.
Note how the main stems are leaning over due to the top-heavy leaves and new growth.
A moss pole (and repotting into a larger pot) would resolve this falling Monstera plant and help it to support those beautiful green larger leaves.
Along with providing your plants with something to grip onto as it grows, moss poles also help to save space inside your home.
Training your plants to grow up (rather than out) can cultivate your indoor plant collection vertically. This frees up a lot of crucial floor space. And you know what that means…
You can buy more plants!❤️❤️
Moss poles also allow you to unleash your creativity with your plants.
Rather than growing standard-looking house plants, moss poles can provide that step up to new and creative designs.
For example, connect two moss poles from individual pot plants and train two different types of plants up each pole. They will eventually meet towards the top and intertwine to form a beautiful feature plant.
Or connect a few different moss poles to create a structure with branches branching (excuse the bad pun) out in a few directions – creating a tree-like base for your plant to engulf.
But there are other benefits to moss poles besides structure. In the next section, we’ll investigate the benefits of using moss poles in your plants.
Benefits of Moss Poles – and Why You Should Use Them!
Moss poles don’t only help with structure. They also provide many other benefits, which we’ll explore below.
Accelerates Maturing Process
Did you notice that we referred to our Monstera Deliciosa as an immature plant?
And we refer to our Monstera plant as a juvenile plant because it hasn’t been staked yet, or propped up with a moss pole. You can also see the leaves remain small and have no distinct splits.
However, now that it is starting to fall under the weight of its leaves, it is almost ready to be supported with a moss pole.
And once it has established itself onto the moss pole, it should help to speed up the maturing process and form those quintessential mature leaves we have all grown to love.
One of the main benefits of moss poles is that they act as another water source for plants. Materials such as peat moss or sphagnum moss are fantastic mediums that can hold and deliver moisture to the aerial roots of plants. We love creating sphagnum moss poles for our indoor tropical plants due to their high water retention properties.
This means your plants have multiple origins of water, which can help to support healthy plant growth. It also safeguards in case one of your water sources dries up.
Some indoor plant owners find it challenging to keep their moss poles moist. Check out our tips and tricks for how to keep your moss pole moist.
Disclaimer warning! So this benefit is entirely a personal opinion, but plants with moss poles just look better.
The plants look much more natural, and it helps spread out their leaves evenly, providing a healthier environment. It allows for proper airflow and circulation and doesn’t allow pests to hide amongst the leaves.
Nutrient Boost (sunlight)
Have you ever wondered why plants tend to grow upwards?
They want to expose their leaves to that glorious light to facilitate the photosynthesis process in their cells, which provides the plants with the necessary nutrients and energy.
And the same applies to our indoor potted plants.
Rather than leaves overlapping and laying on each other, moss poles allow vertical growth. This benefits the plants by distributing their broad leaves at different levels, optimizing the light they receive.
As much as we love moss poles, they are not suitable for all houseplants.
Which Plants Need Moss Poles?
Climbing plants or vining plants are the most suitable match with moss poles.
Popular indoor climbing plants that we love to pair with moss poles are:
- Monstera varieties (such as Monstera Deliciosa, Monstera Adansonii, and Monstera Acacoyaguensis)
- Philodendron varieties (such as Brasil Philodendron and Heartleaf Philodendron)
- Climbing Ivy (such as English Ivy and Climbing Fig Ivy)
- Pothos varieties (like Jade Satin Pothos and Golden Pothos), and
- arrowhead plants.
Any epiphytic plant that naturally vines and attaches itself to tree trunks with air roots will benefit from growing with a moss pole indoors. It allows them to mimic their natural growth patterns in their natural habitat.