Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Up on the Roof - again

Lichens are composite organisms consisting of a symbiotic association of a fungus with an algae.

Although, theoretically, they cause no harm to the roof, at some point they begin to get out of hand. Their function in nature, beyond their own perpetuity, seems to be along the lines of turning their host into soil in some form or fashion, and since we still have a preferred use for the tiles on the roof, I decided to knock 'em back a bit.

In the morning, I took a 'before' picture, showing the courtyard side of the roof becoming a unified field of lichen.

After scraping an hour or two...you can begin to see the original color of the roof tiles. The lichen scrapes off very easily....there's just so much of it!

Now this whole section is done:

It seems to grow mostly on the leeward sides of the roof, and this section was the worst. Another session or two and I can feel good about the ecosystem up there remaining 'roof'. As I worked up close on it, it began to remind me of the appearance of the sea floor the times we've been free diving. That's a nice association, but only divorced mentally from the idea of a roof keeping out the weather. I also began to feel somewhat like an apprentice seaman, scrubbing the deck and polishing the brass on an old three masted sailing ship, probably because I've been reading the biography of Harold Gatty . Well, I've had enough of that for now.

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