Making scenery: GARDENS and HEDGES

These two topics are quickly dealt with, so I saw no need to give each its own page.

This building has a walled garden. The ground has been textured with a mix of Tetrion wall filler powder, mixed with water, PVA glue, and dark brown poster paint. While this was still wet, neat rows of vegetables were added. During World War Two, most gardens were turned into vegetable plots. The plants are: pieces of green foam, pieces of red and yellow rubber lichen, small pieces of dark green flock/foam. A simple idea, which looks rather nice, I think.

The plants along the far wall are: some green towelling, some plastic aquarium plant, some unidentified dried plant matter, some rubberised horse hair painted black (and, after this photograph was taken, flocked with very light green saw dust flock), and rubber lichen.

In the foreground, a short wooden fence, made from card planks and matchstick posts and bracers, contains a pile of coal. The bulk of the pile is polystyrene packaging material, covered in the same mixture used for the earth of the garden, and over this has been glued a thick layer of some black grit I found which looks like miniature coal. Model shops sell miniature coal for modellers of old-fashioned railways. Until very recently, many gardens had piles of coal in them.

Above the back door to the house, is a lamp, painted dark blue. I have used a common manufactured item to make this. It consists of one single piece. The photograph does not show the light-bulb under the shade, but I assure you that there is a light-bulb shaped protuberance under there. If you think that you can guess what I have used to make this lamp, have a guess now, and the first total stranger who sends me the correct answer will win a prize. Foreigners are, I suspect, at a disadvantage, since the item is likely to be far more familiar to we Brits. By crikey, this web site gets more exciting by the minute.

Alas, while this bit worked at the last address, since moving to the new domain name, this "form" has ceased to function, and so far no one has been able to tell me how to get it going again. Sorry.

Enter your e-mail address (required - I won't be able to contact you otherwise)

Now enter your guess

While you're at it, could you please tell me how you found my site?
If by search engine, which one?
... and what did you search for?
If link from site, which site?


Some simple hedges. These are made from dish-scourer pads. In Britain, these are usually green (I have seen orange ones). I fear that in other countries, they may be made in other colours, and green ones might be difficult to get. I've no idea how to dye or paint them if they are the wrong colour entirely. Anyway, I made a base from thick card, textured with wall-filler, and glued on (good old PVA again) the scourer pad material and lots of little twigs, and then dry-brushed the result with very light green acrylic paint. The result is very sturdy and light.

The top design shows a fairly neatly-kept length of hedge, where I have cut long sections of scourer pad, and then roughed these with small off-cuts of pad glued here and there. The bottom design shows a less kempt design, with lots of smaller bits of pad glued across the width of the base. Since the bits tend to end up a bit square-edged, a lot of trimming is needed to hide this offensive perpendicularity.

Another type of hedge I have made is one using rubberised horse hair. A length of this is cut, sprayed black (optionally), and then flocked. I then put a black-painted length of wire running along the inside, towards the bottom. The idea was that this wire would allow me to bend the hedge into any shape required for a wargame. In truth, however, I must report that this design does not work terribly well. The wire twists within the hedge, and refuses to lie flat much of the time, and the flock comes off the horse hair, no matter how much glue I use.

Here, then is the improved version of the horse-hair hedge. I noticed that I never used the earlier versions, so I removed the wire from them, and cut them into lengths to be mounted on card bases. This way, they don't flex and shed so much flock. These were very quick to make, and so I made a load more.

Get some rubberised horse hair, cut a length of it roughly the size of the finished hedge section, then trim the corner edges off it to get rid of the very square shape. Next, cut a piece of thick card to the right size for a base. Next get a mastic gun, and some brown acrylic mastic (see rivers and ponds page) and cover the base with mastic, thinly at the edges and very thickly in the centre. Next, squish your length of rubberised horse hair down into the mastic. There is no need for glue at this stage, as the thickness of the mastic will hold it in place, and it will dry quite quickly. I found that the card bases warped while the mastic was wet, but went straight again when the mastic had dried. While the mastic is wet, you may like to add extra texture the base, like the little tufts of vegetation you see on the upper of the two hedge sections (green garden twine cut very short). I have also threaded little twigs through the centre of the hedge and down into the mastic, for a ramshackle rustic look.

Paint undiluted PVA glue over the hedge, and sprinkle on flock. The upper hedge is the newer hedge and uses one kind of flock. The lower one was the older type and used flock I considered too dark (it looked fine when I made it, but wargame tables in my experience tend to be badly lit). I therefore decided to add a second, lighter shade of flock, and I rather like the effect. Old hedgerows tend to have more than one species of plant in them, so this is a model of an older section of hedge.


Click here to go back to the home page