With all of our rain, this year has sprouted a bumper crop of moss. Green patches are flourishing on the north-facing stone walls . . .
. . . tracking along the concrete courses between bricks . . .
. . . with some leafy liverworts, eddying around the base of Siberian irises . . .
. . . and even sheltering under a spray of yarrow leaves.
I like moss. We all benefit from having our hard edges softened, and moss smooths over the rough places in a most serene manner. My mind was opened to the possibilities of what I had previously considered a nuisance by this array of mosses displayed at the gardens at Ginkaku-ji, the Silver Pavilion, in Kyoto.
In Japan, even the mosses are arranged by status. The sign below reads "Very Important Moss (Like V.I.P.)." At the other end of the hierarchy are the "bad" mosses. Too bad the individual plant labels are in Japanese. I'd like to know who rates the most respect. Maybe sugigoke (Polytrichum commune)?
You can just make out the undulating moss-covered hillside on the opposite bank of this pond at Ginkaku-ji. Serenity.