Introduction: Moss Bombs

Picture of Moss Bombs

Make some simple moss bombs to throw at buildings and add some living green to your urban cement-scape.

Step 1: Find Your Moss

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Moss can be found in all sorts of corners. I found mine near an abandoned pool. You can also find it online, though expensive, at

Step 2: Gather Ingredients

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You'll need:

6 cans of beer. (3 for your bombs, 3 for yourself)
1 box of sugar. (1/2 table spoon per can of beer)
bag of rubber balloons (heavy duty kind will prevent an explosion on your face)
moss (that you collected
acrylic paint (optional)

1 blender
mixing pot
empty soap bottle (to inject solution into balloons) or basting sirynge
empty plastic bottle (or funnel)

Step 3: Grind Moss

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Add the moss slowly into a coffee grinder, or blender if you have one. Grind it slowly, because there will be some small rocks that may damage the blender blade or your eye.

Step 4: Mix Ingredients

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Throw the beer, moss, and sugar into a large pot and stir it around.

Step 5: Add Paint and Moss

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Now comes the hard part. Cut the top off of a plastic bottle or grab a funnel and attach the mouth of the funnel to a balloon. Now pour your paint into the funnel and fill balloon about half full in it's collapsed state. (we'll inflate it with our mixture next)

Step 6: Pour Moss Mixture Into Balloon

Picture of Pour Moss Mixture Into Balloon

This step is a messy one. Pour the mixture of beer and moss into a plastic soap bottle ( or better yet, a basting syringe). Attach the balloon to this and then squeeze the bottle to fill up the balloon. Watch the balloon as it fills to prevent it from exploding.

Step 7: Inflate

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Now i might be best to accept that you probably eat sugar, eat lettuce (moss), and drink beer b/c this step is kind of gross but simple. Just inflate the balloon with your mouth to add more size so that the balloon will pop better when it hits a wall. Then tie of the balloon with an overhand knot.

Step 8: Go Outside

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Now just repeat these steps for each balloon, and then go outside and launch them. Hopefully within a few weeks the moss will grow into the shape of the exploded splash with some nice moss drip marks.
( north walls tend to be better spots for moss to grow)

this project used ideas and resources from :

green guerrilla's green guerrilla's and moss graffitimoss graffiti


low-key lysmith (author)2013-04-09

why the paint?

Just color, for fun.

Mr. Deeds (author)2008-01-19

Interesting. I don't suppose you could put large quantities of this in buckets and use it as a paint of sorts? I personally like the idea of moss painting.

Madrigorne (author)Mr. Deeds2012-11-11

yes indeed you can :)

kikiclint (author)Mr. Deeds2009-07-13

I would leave the paint out of the mix if using it as an actual paint.

waynevanwijk (author)2010-04-05

The easy way to fill the balloon without getting a mouthful of mossy beer would be to add the contents to a bottle that has not been cut or punctured in any way.

Then blow up the balloon to the desired size, twist the neck a few times to stop the air escaping and then stretch the neck of the balloon over the bottle opening. The balloon will stay inflated.

Turn the whole lot upside down and the contents of the bottle will fall into the balloon. Remove the still inflated balloon and tie it off.

I figured out this method whilst making about 300 balloon and birdseed style juggling balls. In fact, I should make an instructable of this.

Madrigorne (author)waynevanwijk2012-11-11

You just taught me how to make my own juggling balls! That's awesome!

spark master (author)2011-12-05

This is ludicrous, moss may be pretty , but it ruins cement. Your paint filled moss bombs look quite disgusting, But perhaps you need the world to look like vomit or diarrhea. Do this in your bed room, sure to impress mummy and dada.

Consider getting your cities to make more green space parks and kill people who destroy them.

Oh BTW , in the summer, since I was maybe 8, we city kids would have water balloon fights. My parents (et al), would flip if we ran the hose too much. We filled a big bucket with water, from it we filled glass soda bottles, (lord I am ancient), we simply inflated the balloon and pulled it (carefully ) over top of a water filled soda bottle to just below crown (no screw tops) then holding the balloon on the neck , inverted them.

Air goes up, liquid goes down. Never had an issue. After 2-3 never lost a balloon. If you want way more air then only put a little sludge water, whatever, and fill the balloon a tad past where you want it. (Newbies will loose air till they get it right)

In later years plastic bottle made it easier, faster too since then they had half gallon bottles.

mpikas (author)2011-12-04

Not a great idea, some mosses and some of the things you'll find with them (mushrooms) can make you pretty sick in pretty small quantities. If you want to get the balloon fuller and pop better just put it over a water faucet or hose nozzle and top it off with some water, that will work better than air and is much safer.

mpikas (author)2011-12-04

You're pretty much just adding something for the moss spores to use as fuel, I've never tried sugar but I've done bread and water or bred and beer, both worked about the same. I usually add them in the previous step in the blender to mix/cut everything up well.

j574sbi (author)2009-07-11

i'm thinking mortar and pestle might be safer and also not ruin my grinder.

mpikas (author)j574sbi2011-12-04

mortar and pestle won't work, you're not so much grinding it as cutting it up/blending it.

spectacular (author)2011-10-25

That. Looks. Disgusting. Haha the paint makes it look like blood (!)

ilpug (author)2011-07-29

i made a filling device for these. pretty simple and makes it a lot easier and cleaner.

wilson.joe (author)2008-05-25

now if there was just a way of getting up on the statue of liberty and getting some moss to grow under her nose... :)

lipase (author)wilson.joe2011-07-10|cat:172541|prd:172541

bowmaster (author)wilson.joe2008-06-12


thermoelectric (author)bowmaster2008-06-30


naruto the ninja13 (author)2010-04-05

how  much moss do you need per beer can?

uldron (author)2009-11-19

THe easier way for this is to get a straw and blow into the straw. it inflates the baloon and no mess in mouth,

cambigfoot (author)uldron2010-01-02

or bike or basketball pump

rockgod57 (author)cambigfoot2010-04-05

ya thatll probly work better

danyforreal (author)2010-03-06

I would advise against blowing into the balloons with your mouth after it's had the moss in them. Couldn't you just use water balloons? I think a soap pump dispenser may give enough pressure to inflate the balloons so that you don't even have to blow any air into them after wards. I've seen Martha Stewart use unflavored yogurt and moss in the blender. But my question is how soon do you have to use the bombs before they go bad or start to explode or stink or rot or whatever? I'm thinking about making a ton of these to explode onto our art center walls.

danyforreal (author)danyforreal2010-03-06

You could also fill an empty squeeze bottle (like the ones for squeezable ketchup) with the mixture all the way. attach the balloon around the tip of the bottle and simply squeeze the bottle to fill the balloon.

yellowexample (author)2010-03-06

 You could probably use a bike pump to inflate the balloons if you didn't want to do it with your mouth.

Kim-CheapKidzClothes (author)2007-12-15

Is there another way to grow moss? I actually don't drink beer and the thought makes me gag. I have a very strange home and one side has a dog house looking space for the generator. The rest of that floor is the garage. I've painted the generator compartment and want moss to cover the concrete. I've never tried to grow it but was going to actually paint it when I had the time. Thanks

 Well, according to sciphii's instructable (, buttermilk and sugar will raise the acidity to the point that will make moss grow.

 Are you trying to camouflage your generator compartment. Hey cool! Home grown camouflage!!

nutsandbolts_64 (author)2010-01-31

 I just read Berkin's comment. Then, I said to myself, "So you can actually *grow* explosives in your lawn". Kinda' funny if you think about it.

Mamohau (author)2010-01-21

Moss painting & sculptures which should interest you!  do some searches on those key words...

animecello (author)2009-12-20

these are cool

uldron (author)2009-11-19

it would be neat to see the result

knex_mepalm (author)2009-08-25

i am not blowing on somehting thata has moss in it, you know that if moss gets into your lungs you can get an infection from them growing and have a 95% chance of dying

d2j5 (author)2009-03-03

thats cool, i know that milk will work as a fertilizer aswell, im not shure how good it might be getting tossed at stuff but the milk does work.

bobwantzanapple (author)d2j52009-06-19

buttermilk is better

d2j5 (author)bobwantzanapple2009-06-22

really? i never thought it would make a difference but i have used just normal milk and it works fine

Mark Drees (author)d2j52009-08-11

It's more acidic which helps the moss grow...

Vulcanator (author)2009-04-24

post pics of the moss after it has grown

red devil 2 (author)2008-06-24

it was fun making the moss bomb but you must use paint

Berkin (author)red devil 22008-11-20

You can make explosives out of dried moss powder called lycopodium or something of the sort.

splnlss (author)Berkin2008-11-20

Woah, any more info moss powder??? that sounds great!

Berkin (author)splnlss2008-11-21

Yeah, you could try the wiki for lycopodium.
That will tell you a lot about lycopodium, its uses, and which species of moss to get it from. You can also buy it in some places (online).

Brainiac Science Abuse has a show called "Dr.Bunhead". In one episode on April Fools Day, Dr.Bun sprinkled lycopodium powder in his friend's light fixture. When he turned it on, the whole thing burst into flames and destroyed the bulb along with it.

(Note: If you find 2 of this comment in your inbox, it's because I had to fix a minor spelling error.)

It's actually the spores of the club moss (Lycopodium), and collecting the spores will take a LONG time, unless you have a seriously large stand to collect from (or unless you can buy it). It's what they used for flash photography (remember the period shows where a person would be looking through the camera and holding a short pole with a platform on top of it...he'd trigger the camera, and the powder--on top of the platform--would flash: that's one of the powders they used for the flash.)

UltraMagnus (author)2008-07-30

pics showing it worked or it doesn't....

llondon (author)2008-04-16

Please, please show pictures of the finished product (growing moss), amazing idea. Nature art could be a big thing on city walls =). +1

Patrik (author)2008-04-16

Nice idea! I just wonder how well the beer+sugar works as a moss fertilizer. Or for that matter, how well the moss tolerates acrylic paint (probably fairly inert, but it may block sunlight). Since you made these last year, could you give us a quick update on how well the moss did on your "targets"?

splnlss (author)2008-03-23

oh nice idea! I think i'll try it again this spring with yoghurt and definitly without the paint.

dustin_grey (author)2008-03-23

If you substitute the beer with buttermilk or yogurt it will also work, I believe. But this seems very very interesting... it's about time to make a city beautiful. Great idea, sir.

LIVINGDEAD247 (author)2007-11-02

It would be great to stencil the virgin mary all over it would be a mirical. where can I find a stencil of virgin mary? The moss needs moisture like next to drain pipes or fountains.

connorcancount! (author)2007-07-31

post some pictures of the moss grown!

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Bio: I teach, work on art projects, and master music. For more info on me go to or for more projects go to ... More »
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