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The rate of wood decay is an important factor to bear in mind when choosing a restoration strategy for wooden architectural monuments. Carrying out restoration hurriedly often leads to the destruction of an authentic monument because the restoration strategy fails to take into account the natural conservation of the wood caused by the biological equilibrium between wood-decomposing organisms established during the period of a monument's life. This quilbirium results in the minimizing of dangerous fungi activity and prevents the active growth and spread of the dangerous building rot fungi.
In this paper, we describe the case of natural wood conservation at the Ensemble of St. Nicholas' Church in Kovda village (Murmansk region, Northern Russia), dating from the 17th century. We suggest that one of the main reasons for equilibrium formation at this monument is its total contamination by a mold Trichoderma viride Pers. This fungus is known to be an active antagonist of many wood-destroying fungi; it could totally restrict growth of dangerous fungi Serpula lacrymans and Coniophora puteana that exist at the Kovda monument. The Kovda ensemble represents an example of the inappropriate use of the total restoration approach that has, due to the complete rebuilding of the Bell Tower, already lead to irreversible damage of the whole ensemble.
authenticity, building rot fungi, historical context, natural conservation, trichoderma viride
Institute of Cancerogenesis, Moscow,
Moscow State University, Moscow,