Green Graffitti: moss as art

Disclaimer:  Bambu Batu does not promote the defacement of public property, nor does it intend for this article to encourage anyone to recreate their own al fresco version of the Mona Lisa on anything but the artist’s personal premises or at the behest of a client.

That being said, how cool is this?  Instead of using paint or markers which contain toxic chemicals, some environmentally-minded taggers are beginning to use moss as a living medium for their creative endeavors.  Mosses are bryophytes, or non-vascular plants, which means that they do not have water-carrying veins or vessels.  They also lack seeds or fruit and remain relatively small throughout their lives.  Mosses photosynthesize like other green plants, but do not absorb nutrients through their roots.  These simple plants reproduce through spores, and can also be propagated by the adventurous artist with a blender and a quick trip to the grocery store.

Want to try your hand at creating a green wall or mural in your garden?  Here’s how;

1.  Gather one small hand full of moss, 2 cups of butter milk or yogurt (vegan yogurt will also work), 2 cups of water or beer, 1/2 tsp of sugar, and corn syrup (optional).

2.  Wash the moss to remove as much dirt from the roots as possible.

3.  Break the moss into small pieces and place into a blender.

4.  Add the buttermilk/yogurt, beer/water and sugar.  Blend until the mixture has a smooth, paint-like texture.  Add corn syrup to thicken mixture if needed in order to avoid dripping upon application.

5.  Use a paintbrush to apply to desired surface.

6.  If possible, return weekly to spray the design with water to encourage growth or add another coat of moss paint.

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