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How to Clean Lava Rock (Including Mold, Moss, and Algae)

How to Clean Lava Rock (Including Mold, Moss, and Algae)

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It’s important to be able to make your property look as nice as it can. Everyone wants to be proud of their yard and adding some features might help you to be really happy with how things look.

Of course, it makes sense to plant flowers and keep your yard tidy to ensure that things will be aesthetically pleasing. It’s also good to think about making your flower beds look better in other ways.

Many people have started adding lava rocks to their garden areas because of how neat they look. Lava rocks simply look really cool and a lot of people love them so much that they use them in multiple spots on their properties.

If you recently bought lava rocks, then you’re likely pretty excited about how good they look. The only problem is that it can be somewhat challenging to keep the lava rocks looking nice.

You see, lava rocks are lightweight stones that have small spaces and holes in them. These little spaces become spots where dust and dirt can pile up.

If you don’t take the time to clean your lava rocks, then they might not look as presentable as you would like them to. Your fun landscaping feature will suddenly look messy and uninviting, but you can stop this from happening.

Read on to learn how to clean lava rocks so that you can keep everything looking great. It shouldn’t be that hard once you know how to approach things.

Standard Cleaning Is Simple

If your lava rocks are just a bit dirty from being exposed to dust and dirt, then it’s going to be easy enough to get them looking clean again. You’ll just have to take a bit of time to actually clean the lava rocks so that you can eliminate the dust and the dirt.

The best way to go about this is to simply get your garden hose and start spraying them off. As long as your garden hose gets decent water pressure, it’s going to be easy to spray the lava rocks until they’re looking very clean and presentable.

It might be necessary to give individual lava rocks some attention if they get really dirty. For instance, you might need to pick a lava rock up and try to clean it from different angles to get rid of all of the dirt.

This can be a bit tedious if your lava rocks are really dirty, but that’s why it’s good to try to avoid letting them get so dirty. It might be smart to get used to regularly spraying the lava rocks with the hose to clean them off so that they don’t get overly dusty or dirty.

Even rainfall can help to clean your lava rocks, assuming that the rain can get to the rocks. If your lava rocks are under a canopy or if they’re too close to your house, then the rain might not be able to wash them as effectively.

Thankfully, you don’t need to go around and wash each lava rock by hand or anything such as that. You could do that if you wanted to, but it would take a substantial amount of time.

Mold, Moss, and Algae Issues

Getting rid of dirt and dust won’t be that big of a deal at all. However, it’s going to be a much different story when you’re dealing with mold, moss, and algae issues.

Sadly, lava rocks are well known for having problems with facilitating mold growth. It’s very likely that you will see mold, moss, or algae growing on your lava rocks at some point in time.

You can’t just let issues such as this go since it’s going to be detrimental to the overall look of your lava rocks. Also, having mold around could be very bad for nearby plants since fungal diseases can be a real concern.

Luckily, there will be things that you can do to help clean off mold, moss, and algae. Keep reading to get the details on what you need to do to clean your lava rocks when they’re having problems such as this.

Cleaning Mold

Mold is probably the biggest problem to look out for when you have lava rocks. Generally, people will put lava rocks in places where mold can become an issue.

You often see lava rocks in flower beds where things are a bit shady. Mold thrives in shady, cool, and moist spots.

Mold can easily grow on lava rocks when the conditions are right, and that’s why you need to remain vigilant. It’s a good idea to regularly check your lava rocks to see if there are any signs of mold.

If you catch things early enough, then you can solve the problem before it gets worse. You don’t want the mold to get on your plants and your cleaning techniques can save the day here.

One good way to get rid of mold is to ensure that more sunlight is present. Mold won’t be able to grow if it is exposed to sunlight this way.

This can be a problem when you’re trying to grow certain flowers or plants that need shade, though. Just try to make the area as sunny as you can within reason while considering the needs of your plants.

You’re also going to want to do your best to get rid of standing water since that can create the conditions where mold can grow. Be careful not to allow water to pool in specific spots near the lava rocks since that is a recipe for bad mold problems.

It’s also going to be wise to clean your mold lava rocks using fungicide. You can spray fungicide on the rocks themselves to kill the fungus and you won’t need to worry about it hurting your plants.

You’ll have a better experience with the fungicide if you ensure that it isn’t going to rain soon. Try to use the fungicide when you know that it isn’t supposed to rain for a few days so that it will be able to stick around and kill the fungus.

Eventually, your lava rocks should be fungus-free and you won’t have to worry any longer. If you try your best to keep the conditions for mold growth to a minimum, then you might not have to worry as much about future mold issues.

Cleaning Moss

Cleaning moss isn’t going to be too tough either so long as you have the right stuff. What you want to do is go out and buy a chemical moss controller and put it on your lava rocks.

This stuff utilizes ingredients such as iron sulfate, copper sulfate, and more to keep moss from being able to grow. Moss isn’t as dangerous or worrisome as mold, but this doesn’t mean that you want it to grow on your beautiful lava rocks.

The big problem with moss is that it will cover up the lava rocks and prevent you from being able to enjoy them properly. The chemical moss controller that you purchase should work very well and you won’t need to be concerned any longer.

It’ll become possible to simply wash the lava rocks off as normal and call it a day. If you notice moss growing on your lava rocks, then it’s worthwhile to go buy a chemical moss controller and solve the issue quickly.

Cleaning Algae

Algae is going to be able to grow in areas that have high moisture levels and excess nutrients. If you have standing water, then it’s much more likely that algae is going to grow on your lava rocks.

Of course, it’ll be a good idea to remove the standing water to keep this from happening. The best approach is to try to keep algae from getting on your lava rocks in the first place.

You see, algae is going to be kind of tough to clean off of the lava rocks because of how porous they are. This doesn’t mean that it can’t be done, though.

You’re going to want to get a water bottle and use one part bleach and one part water to make a cleaning solution. Ensure that your water bottle has a spray nozzle so that you can easily spray the rocks.

To get the rocks clean it’s going to be necessary to spray each lava rock individually. This is likely going to be a time-consuming process if the algae problem is significant, but you can get everything cleaned up over time.

The problem with this idea is that you’ll need to be really careful when spraying bleach water near your plants. Plants should absolutely not be exposed to bleach, and that’s why some people choose to remove the lava rocks and spray them in a completely different part of the yard.

It might be safest to lay a tarp on your driveway and move all of the lava rocks to the tarp. This will allow you to have a safe spot to spray them down and clean them without having to be concerned about your plants.

If you do decide to just leave the lava rocks where they are, then try to be as careful as you can with the spray bottle. When some of the bleach water gets on a plant, you’re going to want to rinse it off right away.

It might be wise to flush the soil with water to prevent any bleach from making it near the roots of your plants as well. Generally, it’s going to be best to go with the tarp idea to avoid any potential issues if you care about your plants.

Lava Rock Maintenance Tips

The best way to keep your lava rocks looking great will be to try to prevent them from getting too dirty in the first place. There are many things that you should be doing to try to keep your flower beds looking nice that will help you out.

Keeping the weeds in the area pulled will actually make a big difference. As soon as you see weeds sprout, it’s going to be a good idea to pull them up and get rid of them.

Weeds can make things shady and give mold a chance to grow in certain spots. Being proactive about weeding your gardens might help you to avoid many of the problems mentioned above.

It’s also going to be smart to try to keep debris from getting on your lava rocks. There are so many things that can fall in your flower beds naturally.

You might have lots of leaves fall during the autumn months. It’s also possible that grass clippings and other types of organic material could get in your beds if you aren’t careful.

Take a leaf blower and try to use it to get all of the debris away from your lava rocks. Do this every so often to keep the beds clean and to make it less likely that your lava rocks will get dirty.

Finally, it’s just going to be smart to spray your lava rocks down every so often. A little rinse for the lava rocks can go a long way toward preventing dirt and dust from gathering.

Final Thoughts

Lava rocks are fantastic and you shouldn’t hesitate to get some for your property if you’re interested. They can add charm to your property and will really make your flower beds pop in a whole new way.

Keeping the lava rocks clean will be important when you want your property to look its best. This isn’t necessarily a hard thing to do, but it will require you to pay attention to some things.

Regularly rinsing the lava rocks is a good idea and you’ll want to maintain your beds properly as well. It’s also going to be necessary to try to take steps to prevent mold, moss, and algae issues from popping up.

If you can be proactive and use the advice above, then you’ll be in good shape. It’ll be easy for you to enjoy your lava rocks for a long time to come and you won’t have to be so concerned about them staying clean.

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