from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition
- n. Any of various plants having parts suggestive of a beard, as Spanish moss.
- n. See fringe tree.
- n. See virgin's bower.
Sorry, no etymologies found.
It was a beautiful unkept hedge with scarlet and purple fruit among the many-coloured fading leaves and silver-grey down of old-man's-beard.
Afoot in England
"Yes, Spanish moss, as we call it here, or _old-man's-beard_ moss, as they name it in other parts.
The Boy Hunters