To duplicate nature is ~ in my opinion ~ one of the most difficult things on a layout. 


As a child, you're happy with anything that looks 'green'.

Green sawdust was grass. It's just what you believe to see and what you want to see.


Making trees is a chapter all by itself. Most trees on layouts are too small, too plastic, too foamy, just unnatural.


That inspired me to look for natural materials. Leaves are pretty difficult to duplicate in scale. 

But trunks and bushes can be made out of the right material.


One of the topics on my wish list was a real firm tree, standing in the back of the station and older then the oldest passenger sitting in it's shade. Well... see for yourself.


Since trees are not just a trunk and a large crown, it's the idea that you can see that it has branches.  But in scale 1:87 that's pretty difficult.

A real oak is about 15 - 20 meters in height.  "But what sort of plant has this kind of structure of a trunk with trees?"


I discovered that the answer was in my backyard. There were these bushes of hydrangea.  I cut off one of its largest flowers. 

Best time: summer time, i.e. at the utmost flourishing. Don't wait until autumn holidays, since they begin to shrink by then.


To have a trunk with branches all in one piece, it takes some 2 hours to cut off all the leaves.

That's not less then some 200 cuts or more per tree with fine scissors.

Who cares, it's the result that counts.


After having cut off the flowers of the hydrangea, I took poly fibre (Woodland Green FP178) to create the crown of the "tree to be", soaked the poly with diluted white glue and then sprinkled on coarse turf (Woodland T 60/61). 


More diluted white glue and then various coloured but matching foam bits.

 Finally greenish/brownish ground cover, a final "glue soaking" and there it emerged:

one beautiful tree!


This tree making business is a very sticky procedure, but the end result is definitely worth it! 


To finish it with some brown tones, use a thin  layer of fine sifted wood shreds. 

Still, the trunk is too thin for an oak tree.


So I took toilet paper, cut it out in a very long triangle, and rolled it  from the bottom to the top around the trunk. 

As you can see, the trunk gets smaller at the top this way.


I soak the 'paper' trunk with diluted white glue and pour a brown mixture of shreds on it.


You won't believe the effect (neither did I). Until you see the result.

It's not often that a project materializes exactly into what one envisioned.


Here my second tree is hanging for drying.

You can see that I left a small part of the trunk clear to stick in the undergrowth later.


Here's a clear view from the platform, without the oak in the background. But when it's planted...


... you'll see the difference.


One of the things I like most about trees in the landscape, is the way they cast their shadow on the ground.

That's how real atmosphere is created. I presume...


The lamppost reminds me to the one in the woods of C.S. Lewis' "The witch, the Lion and the  Wardrobe".


Due to mountainous winds the Olde Oak was bend during the decades past.

The road to town just leads right under its heavy branches.


When the horse drawn cart is passing under it, you'll have to stoop to avoid that a branch will hit your top hat.

Seeing this view, I don't need an extra train coming by to pay attention to.


This is just pure joy. That is to say...

Reines Genießen!