Hedgerows, Saplings & A Surprise…

For the past few weeks I have been working on an unkempt hedgerow that will run along the goods yard boundary. Rather than take the easy option and use clumps of horsehair covered in foliage, I decided to try Gordon Gravett’s methods as explained in his books and articles. Why do things the hard way, well I wanted the hedgerows to have an airy, open look. I also enjoy modelling scenery, and pushing myself to create something a little better.

I started off by making some basic armatures from strands of 30 gauge paper coated florists wire. The paper coating enables the strands of wire to be bonded together with a coat of PVA.

Once painted with a dark grey, almost black coat of artists acrylics, Woodland Scenic’s medium green foliage was teased out and applied over the branches. There are cheaper foliage mats out there, but they don’t seem to be colourfast, I learned that the hard way! Some long straw coloured grasses, with perhaps a few wildflowers will be added later as I continue to work up the scene.

The hedgerow from a different angle showing its open nature and how it becomes more dense towards the backscene. The idea being to create a shadowed area as the yard approach lane reaches the backscene, see the photo below.

An area of rough grass has now taken root around the rusted yard gate, which hasn’t been swung closed for years. A gatepost on the opposite side of the lane has yet to be added, along with some rusted railings behind the yard office, the buffer stop and water tower.

Whilst working in and around the goods yard, I was thinking about the proposed trees at the other side of the layout, and came to the conclusion that perhaps some young saplings would work better? My thinking being that the scene would look more open.

Early days yet, but I think the saplings work rather well, blending nicely into the trees painted on the backscene. The armatures were constructed in the same way as those for the hedgerow, and were covered with a mix of dark and mid green foliage mat. The undergrowth along the cutting has been worked up with coarse turf, which again is from the Woodland range.

The goods yard is now coming together much as planned, but there is still plenty of work to do. Such as adding a ladder, handrails and access hatch to the water tower, which also need weathering. Then the yard offices need finishing off, and the yard surface itself needs to be more overgrown.

On a different note AEC Railcar W26W paid a surprise visit to Bleddfa Rd. last week. Here she is waiting to depart with the late afternoon service to Presteign, Kington and Leominster. This is the new Heljan model, which looks rather at home in her surroundings.

Geoff

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