Half a croissant, on a plate, with a sign in front of it saying '50c'
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Lichen Paint

Stand...on...my liverwort -- your money or your life.
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Last Wednesday (or it could have been Thursday, I can never remember) I took a good long look at my wall. It's a fine wall, and I supress my normal modesty in stating so, but I feel it is deserved. Its failing is its infancy. The wall is new and sits amongst its laystone peers and the fallen stones of its surrounding. These elders have a fine fur of spore-laden moss and a variety of lichen in various shades from alabaster to peppermint and mustard.

I'm sure, with time and a decade of wet and windy weather, my wall will blend well with its environment and grow old gracefully below the old apple tree but I'm an impatient kind of chap. I long to help it on its way with a gallon can of paint-on-lichen, a biodegradable paint rich in friendly lichen spores and in available in a variety of actual lichen shades, but a paint which fades and crumbles as the plant-life grows stronger to produce a seamless gradient from the artifical to the awful.

oniony, Mar 29 2006

Moss Graffiti http://www.storiesf...l/mossgraffiti.html
Lichen would be cool too. [Markle, Mar 29 2006]

yes, yogurt http://www.hgtv.com...571_1388038,00.html
so they say [nth, Mar 30 2006]


       The question remains - why did you build a wall around the old apple tree?
fridge duck, Mar 29 2006

       There's quite a bit of difference in techniques required depending upon whether you want true lichens (particularly crustose lichens) or just garden variety moss. Moss is easy to cultivate. Lichens are nearly impossible to cultivate, and will be destroyed by using any of the formulas discussed above.   

       This info comes from: "A Rocky Mountain Lichen Primer" by Corbridge & Weber, University Press of Colorado, 1998. Dr. Corbridge is a Law professor at University of Colorado and an amateur lichenologist. Dr William "Bill" Weber is Professor Emeritus(Botany), was curator of University of Colorado's Herbarium, and author of numerous "Colorado Flora" books, among others.   

       "Gardeners and homeowners should be informed that these lichens can be killed by care. They do not require any watering, they grow very slowly (few people will be able to live long enough to see any growth), and they are sensitive to pollution of many kinds. In the home, lichens on the fireplace, if watered, may be quickly destroyed by the molds that are prevalent in the air of the rooms. When they accumulate dirt, they are difficult to clean. Some crusts may be cleaned by wadding up white bread and using this as a "wallpaper cleaner". Foliose and fruticose lichens are extremely fragile, perhaps a soft airbrushing might help. Do not attempt to make them grow, despite what you may be told by ignorant dealers.....If you have lichens, don't water them." He goes on to say that a New York Times garden editor once suggested that a spreading a coat of peanut butter over the lichens would help them turn green. It produced nothing but a thick coating of green mold. He has seen expensive rock walls in malls destroyed from scrubbing them with a wet mop. He maintains that "Even normal watering in the garden will eventually kill them".   

       Hope this helps you.
jurist, Mar 30 2006

       [jurist]: "Lichen primer" -- now why didn't I think of that title!
oniony, Mar 30 2006

       I believe bigsleep is correct in one method. Martha Stewart 'paints' yoghurt onto clay flower pots and waits for the moldy-moss to start growing on it. I can't compete with the knowledge of jurist, but this seems quite simple to try.
xandram, Mar 30 2006

       Chia wall. I dunno this is really a niche market.
miggavin, Mar 30 2006


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