How to Kill Moss Lichens

Moss is a small, nonflowering plant, while lichen is a symbiotic combination of an alga and a fungus. Both moss and lichens can be found growing on a variety of surfaces, including houses, trees, sidewalks and walls. Moss and lichens can add a magical, fairy tale feel to the area; however, they can also trap moisture. Excess moisture can cause mould to grow as well as damage the surface to which they adhere. Moss and lichens can become quite slippery and pose a risk of injury if growing on sidewalks and walkways.

Remove the moss and lichen with a water hose. Use the water pressure to push the moss and lichens off the surface. Scrub any remaining moss and lichen off with a stiff-bristled brush broom.

Wear rubber gloves. Pour 1 gallon of water in a bucket. Add 1/2 cup of bleach and mix. You can substitute trisodium phosphate for the bleach, if desired.

Dip the stiff-bristled brush broom into the bleach mixture. Begin scrubbing the surface with the broom in a back-and-forth motion. Continue dipping the broom in the mixture and scrubbing the surface until the moss and lichens have been removed.

Rinse the surface clean with the water hose. Move the water hose in a back-and-forth motion, up and down the surface to remove all traces of the bleach mixture.

Allow the surface to air dry. Repeat the process if needed.


Trisodium phosphate--also known as TSP--is a cleaning agent that can remove grease and kill mould. It is available at department stores and home improvement centres.

Things You'll Need

  • Water hose
  • Stiff-bristled brush broom
  • Rubber gloves
  • Bleach or trisodium phosphate (TSP)
  • Stirring stick
  • Bucket
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About the Author

Amanda Flanigan began writing professionally in 2007. Flanigan has written for various publications, including WV Living and American Craft Council, and has published several eBooks on craft and garden-related subjects. Flanigan completed two writing courses at Pierpont Community and Technical College.