As you never know when you might find a use for something I have a tendency to hang on to things like these and tuck them away in storage. So this has left me with a number of small trees in various shapes and sizes.
I was really pleased with the way the Woodland Scenics Coarse Turf created the foliage for my larger trees and so I experimented on some of the smaller trees using the same method. I thought they turned out quite well and were a big improvement on the original. So I began to think of ways I might put them to use.
The tallest of the trees bear a resemblance to the types that line the roads in parts of rural France and as these were something missing from my terrain collection they became the first project.
The tree trunks and branches come in a shiny brown plastic and so I gave them a coat of Vallejo light grey.
Once dry this was followed with a wash of Citadel's Agrax Earthshade to bring out the texture in the bark.
The next job was to apply additional foliage. The existing foliage was liberally doused in Woodland Scenics scenic cement.
Medium Green Coarse Turf was then applied. I wasn't careful about covering all the existing foliage, in fact I liked the way some of it came through to break up the colour.
The base was then textured using PVA glue and a mix of sand.
Once dry it was given a base coat of paint using Dulux emulsion Brown Land.
This was then given a dry brush with a lighter shade before adding flock and ground cover.
The trees work very well for 20mm and just about pass muster for 28mm, although they might be a little on the short side. Here they are with a 1/72 scale Firefly.
And to be honest I don't think they look too small with this 28mm miniature.
The next project was something I've been considering for some time and that is to revisit my hedgerows. While I'm quite happy with the ones I've made I've begun to think they look a little too neat and well kept and unlike the types of hedges you see in period pictures.
I wanted something that could recreate the look of the hedgerows in the 1944 aerial photograph below.
The small trees seemed to offer an easy way to add some variation to the hedgerows. A couple of years ago I had created some hedges specifically to represent bocage but I overdid them in terms of height and scale for 20mm and I've never actually used them. I know bocage hedges could be quite tall but I just wasn't comfortable with quite how wide and tall these were.
While they provide good cover for this suspicious looking group of French Resistance fighters I have created far too many of them and more than I'm ever likely to need.
I decided to convert several of them into something that could work as either bocage or rural hedgerows. The rubberised coconut fibre that forms the basis of the hedges was removed and cut to a much smaller size. It was then broken up into clumps to vary the height and so that trees could be interspersed between them.
These now seem to be a better height and scale for the 20mm figures bearing in mind that they will increase in height when the foliage is added.
Here it is in comparison to the previous height.
The next stage was to apply foliage as I had done with the trees. I start off with a dark layer of Coarse Turf.
You can see how the foliage has already increased the height and this will increase again once I apply a lighter shade over the top.
The dark foliage then had a layer of light green coarse turf added to finish off the hedges. Lastly the whole lot was given a misting of scenic cement to hold everything down.
Those two projects have made a small dent in my 'excess' tree collection, but I'm not done with them all just yet. I think I might make a few more hedgerows like the ones above as I'm really happy with those, meantime I'll have a think about what I can do with all the others.