Trees 4Many of you are probably aware of a product called Super Trees that is sold by Scenic Express.   The “trees” are a form of weed from the Artic region.  I guess they are like polar sagebrush.   At any rate, the trees build up into a decent looking piece of vegetation.

I bought a box of Super Trees for the layout.  My plan to use them for background along the transition space between the 3D foreground and the 2D background.   Well, that was the plan.  More on that later.

I opened up the large box and broke off a few branches to test.  The instructions suggest wetting the trees down with glue ( 50/50 Matt Medium and distilled water with a dash of photo wetting agent).  Straighten out the trunk while wet.  You can apply flocking or do as I did.  I sprayed the trees with flat gray from a rattle can.

trees 1

I like the gray since many trees are some shade of gray.   So far, I have only spent a few minutes per tree to get this point.    The next step is to apply the leaves.  I tried Super Leaf which is sold by Scenic Express.  A sample was included in the tree box.  My normal choice for this is Selkirk Leak.  I like their range of colors and sizes.  The Super Leaf did work fine.

I applied leaves while the trees were upside down and then from the topside.  You can apply a final spray of the glue mix the set any loose material.    The final tree height will vary depending upon how much pruning you do and what you break off from the bundle.

Trees 3trees 2


Give the trees a try!

Happy Trails,



13 thoughts on “MODELING: Trees

  1. Thank you Gene, I understand your predicament. Really hope you keep good posts coming. Your freight cars are phenomenal! I’m such a perfectionist that I’m reluctant to take pictures of cars with less than prototypical undercarriage and even Kadee couplers as they are a dead giveaway and do not fool ;the trained eye. Hope you keep your excellent photographs intriguing us who appreciate your work.

  2. Gene;
    We’re in the moving mode-railroad is mostly packed, just a few project items still out, so I feel your pain-
    Your articles are great-thanks to your diverse topics.
    Look forward to seeing you at OSW

  3. Wow – that’s quite a decision to make.
    My wife and I debated moving several times. We finally decided to do a major renovation instead of relocate to get what we wanted.
    I feel for you: building a layout is never an easy task – even a modest layout like the kind you and I have been building – and it’s hard to consider tearing one out.
    I look forward to hearing what you decide – and I’m glad you will continue to share your rolling stock projects and other non-layout hobby work via the blog.
    – Trevor (Port Rowan in 1:64… for now…)

    • Trevor
      Maybe I should contact “Love it or List it”? Seriously, a large home requires a lot of everything which is harder to satisfy as one gets older.


  4. I also went through that layout quandary as retirement approached and a move some 400 miles away. But, the good part was having time to plan ahead what I wanted to do different for a layout and spending more time on the rr model building. Of the old layout itself, I salvaged rail, electrical items, and the reusable lumber.


    • Charlie
      Good things to consider. Haven’t made any decision yet. Taxes in the California have gone up a lot in the last year. I guess you can’t have a utopian society in this state without having someone to pay for it.

  5. Missed this when first posted.

    It is ironic that you fitted out the garage as a RR room and now might leave it behind – maybe for a better RR room! I plan to get mine done before summer.

    Based on 2014 and 2015 winters we were ready to head south if this winter was bad – it will be over 70* today so that pressure is off. We are having some upgrade remodeling wrapped up that makes the house more saleable if we decide that we want a change but the kids tell us that they like the relative convenience of this location versus Florida or Arizona (my choice) – question whether we live for us or them and do two people really need 2500 square feet!

    Getting old is not for wimps!

  6. I don’t enjoy moving and packing, but I do really enjoy unpacking, and thinking… John Allen once wrote that (paraphrase) sometimes you put so much thought into planning something that you have to do the project to see if it works… unpacking is a kind of Christmas – you see things you have forgotten that you have. And I like the brain exercise that comes with a new layout.
    Good luck, and enjoy the ride!

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