How to clean my new rock walls...

scully931(6)March 29, 2007


I purchased a house last October and am finally getting out to spruce it up a bit. There are very old rock walls, which are really cool, but in addition to the moss overtaking them, there is a white (very hard)scaly substance on them. I have tried wiping it and scraping it off with garden tools and it barely budges. Not sure if it is some sort of calcium deposit or what. I have included a picture. Thank you for any advice in removing the substance!

~Deb =-)

Here is a link that might be useful:

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Pudge 2b

Power washers do some amazing things on rocks- if you know someone who has one, or rent one, it might be worth a try.

Maybe lime residue? Vinegar might help, but it would kill any plants (including the moss) as well.

    Bookmark   March 30, 2007 at 5:47PM
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dogridge(7b nc)

It looks like lichen. I would leave it, looks neat to me. Nice wall BTW.

    Bookmark   April 4, 2007 at 7:56PM
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I agree it's lichen and I think it looks nice and natural. Probably took 50 years to grow.

    Bookmark   April 23, 2007 at 10:20AM
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maureen1953(Z4 Central NY)

Lots of people would kill for old stone walls covered with moss and lichen.... it helps to give maturity to garden plantings and represents years and years of environmental effects on the wall....instead of fighting it and trying to remove it, try to learn to appreciate it and see how it enhances your plants and flowers! Add some creeping sedums and thymes to fill in between the cracks of the rocks, beautiful!

    Bookmark   April 24, 2007 at 11:29AM
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maureen1953(Z4 Central NY)

Just looked at the pic of your steps and wall, how lucky you are to have such a beautiful stone setting for your alpine and rock garden plants!

    Bookmark   April 24, 2007 at 11:41AM
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pfmastin(8 N. Carolina)

I's wonderful.

    Bookmark   June 16, 2007 at 8:59PM
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cynandjon(Z 5/6)

Yep thats lichen, I agree with the rest. Moss and lichen are natural and beautiful. below is a link if you would like to read it, scroll down to lichen ecology.

Here is a link that might be useful: lichen ecology

    Bookmark   July 23, 2007 at 8:02AM
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Hi. I'm new to this forum and was just scrolling thru and saw this post.

OH MY GOODNESS! I know what you mean about those white spots. I think they are HORRIBLY UGLY and you should be very, very concerned about them. In fact I think you should immediately dig those particular stone steps up and ship them directly to me.

I have a way to...umm,...dispose of them properly and you won't have to worry about them any more, okay?

Just PLEASE be careful digging them up and don't knock off ANY of the gorgeous...I mean horrible, ugly, and probably even deadly lichen. ;)


    Bookmark   August 26, 2007 at 2:23PM
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