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Using dried Sedum as base for trees on HO layouts

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  • Member since
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Using dried Sedum as base for trees on HO layouts
Posted by pennsyj1fan on Thursday, September 27, 2012 10:15 AM
I thought I read in an issue of MR or on the MR Forum that you could use dried Sedum for making trees on an HO layout. Does anyone know which issue it could have been in or what type of Sedum one can use for trees. Buying the pre-made ones is quite expensive if one needs lots of trees.
  • Member since
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  • From: Northeast OH
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Posted by NeO6874 on Thursday, September 27, 2012 10:37 AM

quick search on google turned up this thread --

I'm sure it's been put in one of the print copies of MR within the past 3-5 years, and probably all over the place in even older editions Smile


Builder of Bowser steam! Railimages Site

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Posted by Guy Papillon on Thursday, September 27, 2012 6:07 PM

As I will have to make some trees in a near future I made some research recently and I found a video on YouTube about making trees from Sedum.  This video provides some information but I would not like to have this kind of trees on my layout.  I am still searching.


Modeling CNR in the 50's

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Posted by MisterBeasley on Thursday, September 27, 2012 7:40 PM

My wife had some sedum in her garden, so I harvested it at the end of the season a few years back.  I didn't do anything special.  I just let it dry out, and then sprayed it with "moss green" paint from a rattle can.  Then I hand-painted the trunks and branches with gray craft paint.

The sedum trees are the tall, spindly ones with no lower branches.  This is the way it grows.  I left the original foliage on the branches, and I didn't add anything else.  Not being much of a botanist, I have no idea if this is a completely unnatural tree, but it looks reasonable to me.  I like the high "canopy" look to these trees, which I supplement with lower ones to get a more natural forest look.

In this picture, the tree behind the engine to the right is another sedum.

I've found these to be kind of fragile, particularly the tops.  But, I don't handle them and these have all lasted for years.

Other modelers have augmented the the tops with some leaf flock.  That gives a fuller tree, and lets you play with the color a bit, too, but these do the job for me.

It takes an iron man to play with a toy iron horse. 

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Posted by superbe on Thursday, September 27, 2012 9:21 PM

Here are some sedums cut down to be more like bushes. Like Mr. B I just use a rattle can spray for color.


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Posted by Jumijo on Friday, September 28, 2012 5:34 AM

Seedum trees look best when they are constructed from more than one plant and when they are covered with ground foam. Adding texture to the trunk to resemble bark also makes it look more like a tree. Otherwise, they just look like a plant plopped on a layout.

See the Scenic Jumijo Railroad in CTT and OGR magazines! 

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Posted by HHPATH56 on Friday, September 28, 2012 6:54 AM
I am surprised that no one mentioned the use of Scenic Express Super Trees.($98 produces about 350 trees) Or a $25package produces about 60 trees. I am in HO scale and needed several hundred deciduous trees. I change the trees with the season. The first photo shows a combination of Summer and Fall foliage. I purchased the super crate of Super Trees from Walthers and a pack of Sage for making the trunks of close-up trees. I have found that if you open the bottom of the box, that the Super Trees are radially laid out in the box, and can be removed with little damage to the brittle trees. I spray paint the stems with dark grayish brown. As Suggested by others, it is a good idea to thoroughly soak the trees in a 50/50 solution of water and Matte Medium. This makes them less brittle and is an adhesive. I hold three branches together for this, and then spray on spray adhesive (or hair spray) over the box of Super trees (less mess and pre-coats the stems in the box. Thus,expensive spray adhesive is not wasted. I then hold the three stems over a bag of Summer or Fall colored fine turf foam, and sprinkle the turf onto the trees. It is a good idea the finish the job with another spray of adhesive. I use carpenters glue to attach the Super tree to the sage. I ,personally think that the Super Trees are more realistic than either the Sedum or puff ball trees. Click on photos to enlarge them. Then, click on "Previous" or "Next" to view other scenes on my layout.  Another idea is for creating a conifer forest on a narrow ridge. I use the black packing sponge andcut it into 1/8" thick sheets. Spray the sheets with Forest green spray paint, and then cut them with a zig-zag pattern; Spray with varied colors of green and layer these onto to top of a narrow ridge
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Posted by maxman on Friday, September 28, 2012 11:43 AM

Guy Papillon
 but I would not like to have this kind of trees on my layout.

I know others have their opinions.  But I have to agree.  I don't believe that I've ever seen any example of a Sedum-based tree which looked realistic to me.

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