What are Lichens? Lichen Removal Melbourne | VICRestorations.com

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A slate roof and bluestone parapet laden with lichen.

Want to clean lichen from your roof tiles, brick or stone walls? There are several methods which you can use to help remove the unsightly outbreaks.

The Dry Scrape

By taking the time to remove lichen this way, you can also improve the surface of the stone, tile, brick, or block that is harboring it. Lichen are a mixture of fungus and mould, created by spores and moisture. They can harbor moisture helping to breakdown the stone or masonry surface underneath.

By taking a dull object such as a straight piece of softwood, you can physically dislodge the lichen from the surface of the substrate. The following video shows the movement albeit has a chisel being dragged instead of a piece of timber. The stone in this case was also bluestone which isn’t easily marked. Caution should always be used with soft stone such as slate, marble, sandstone and limestone.

If you have an ornate statue or architectural feature such as an intricate carving, you will want to use other methods in conjunction with a very soft, dry scrape.

The Cocoon
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Lichen growth shown on a stone monument.

Wrapping a statue up in cling wrap for 3-4 days will help to soften dirt, mould and fungus that may have hardened. After the pollutants have softened, remove the ‘poultice’ and commence using a soft dry scrape method as shown above.

Biocides

Spraying chemicals has its appeal but it also has it’s drawbacks. If not diluted or used properly the typical ammonium-based sprays can cause damage or not work at all.

Wet and Forget

Use a garden sprayer to thoroughly saturate the lichen with a solution of 1 part Wet & Forget Outdoor and 5 parts water. Wait 15 minutes, and spray a second time. This will allow the Wet & Forget Outdoor to penetrate the lichen’s 2 layers. It is best to spray lichen on a day that is not too sunny, to prevent rapid evaporation and to allow Wet & Forget more time to work.  Read more…

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