Having being doing some clearing out, I gathered together all of the various uncompleted large trees that I had been collecting for the larger scales and set about sorting them out, basing them and doing a basic refurbishment.
The box included five large armatures from Woodland Scenics that had been twisted into place and already based, but the branches lay bare. They struck me as looking good for a winterised terrain setting, but I wanted mine ‘dressed’. I have always had problems getting clump foliage to properly stick on these things and building up the trees has subsequently been somewhat hit and miss.
Anyway, a new approach for me at least, was to hot glue that moss lichen stuff to both sides of the branches, spray with watered down PVA to set it (hanging the trees upside down on the washing line .... to drip dry) and then when fully dry, using one of those spray glues for (mounting photographs etc) onto the foliage and dipping the whole thing into Woodland Scenic course turf. The lichen gives the bulk and the turf gives a finer finish.
They look quite good on the table, but while the moss is a good way to get bulk, the PVA spray does not stiffen the moss in the same way as it does with clump foliage, so they are a bit soft and spongy and need a bit of careful handling. I will put a few coats of hairspray on them to act as a fixative for further firming and see how they get on. Anyway there are a couple of them front / left in the photo and I just mention it here in case anyone else is experimenting with foliage.
The largest widest tree is something I made myself from twisting wire into an armature and then using Milliput Putty to coat the wire for a bark effect. Interesting to do, but I doubt I will be making any more!
The rest of the trees are either those perfectly formed 'loo brush' type trees or the ones that 4Ground do in packs of 3 - 4 with a larger base. I like the 4Ground trees and each time I go to a show, I get one pack (from Colonel Bills) to slowly replace the 'loo brush' types.
For bases I use a mix of plastic rounds (Renedra Plastics) for those trees that come with a foot that can be glued to a base and 2mm MDF rounds (Warbases) for those that just have an exposed wire trunk and need the base drilled to take the twisted wire. All the bases were given the same basing and flocking materials, so that there is some continuity in presentation. Hot Glue is your friend because you can draw some threads out that can be painted up to look like roots.
As part of the 'refurb', I added some watered down PVA, followed by hairspray, to a few of my ‘horse hair and heavy flock’ terrain features, bought from The Last Valley at the Phalanx wargame show a few years ago.
For the relatively small amount of time needed to do all of this, they should end up giving a decent long term presence on the table. The question is where to store them now :-)
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