I thought that duplicity was a good thing—having duplicates of things you value should be a good thing. My wife straightened me out—as she is prone to do—that duplicity is not a desired trait. So . . you can call this practice of having multiple items whatever you want—I still prefer duplicity. Actually . . “multiplicity” is not a bad alternative. Anyway, let me tell you about the extent of my duplicity—I’ll stick to garden related items. The logic for my practice is many-fold: It is so frustrating when you want to use a particular tool, and you can’t find it. Having many around solves this. I have four 2 x 5 inch trowels used for the daily hunt for weeds. There are 3 or 4 moisture meters around here somewhere. I have only 2 of those thinning pruners that I have shown you, which is scary—only two. There are 2 sets of knee pads. I only have one weed torch, but I seem never to lose it, so one will do. What I am definitely going to have to buy is another pair of gloves. I am constantly misplacing the one pair—so maddening. Gloves are not something I think you can just buy online. I think you really need to try them on before purchase. 3 gardening hats, 2 neck braces. And 2 forearm bands round out my multiplicity needs. It should be mentioned that other than the problem of misplacement, there is also the consideration of wearing out a loved item and not being able to replace it. So I would suggest that when you find a gardening item, or anything else that you really love, immediately buy a second (or third) one. I have to admit that my fetish for multiplicity ends with my wife—I can only handle one of these at a time. Anyway, where would I find another one as good as I have right now?
For some reason this year my garden has been under an intense attack of moss plants. I suppose the most likely cause is the drought we’ve experienced. Perhaps moss plants sense a coming doom and have sent out a flood of spores. Normally I blame unusual weed seed dispersal on my leaf blower, but moss plants are appearing where that cause is unlikely. What I’ve decided is the most likely hypothesis is the fact that moss plants are growing on the roof—particularly in the shade of our huge hackberry tree—and the spores are being spread throughout the garden by the wind.
I googled moss on roofs and learned that not only will moss plants tend to lift asphalt shingles, but also causes them to deteriorate. More research revealed solutions. There is a product called “Moss Out” that is designed to kill moss on roofs. I thought $20 for a bottle was a little much, but I bit the bullet. Before I applied a diluted solution, I spent two days scraping as much moss off the shingles that I could. The most effective tool for this task was my trusty 2 x 5 trowel that I keep urging you to buy. Then, using a hose, I washed the debris off the roof and collected the runoff in a rain barrel. This seemed to be far more logical than using my leaf blower. The moss plants are supposed to be first wet anyway. I then applied the solution.
I checked the roof several days later, and frankly, was not impressed with the results. Perhaps the moss was deader than it looks. It’s not as though it’s going to wilt or something. Not to be deterred, I moved on to the next idea: Apparently the metal zinc is toxic to moss plants. I have ordered a 50-foot roll of zinc metal sheeting. When it arrives, I will install it along the ridgeline so the when it rains, the dissolved zinc will flow over the moss plants and kill them. This is supposed to be a slow process and results may not appear for several months during the rainy season, but I am patient as well as persistent.
If you have experienced a similar attack of moss in your garden, you might simply need to look above you to find the source of the invasion.
Stan, The Moss Man
P.S. My wife insists on a disclaimer that I am not encouraging you to get up on your roof. You might instead hire a professional moss scraper instead.