Reforesting the Layout with the Model Railroad Club

Sign in
Duration: 9:09

Membership Options


Sign up for premium membership and get access to our best model railroad videos and step-by-step instructional projects. Learn new techniques and tips from friendly experts. Anytime. Anywhere.
Monthly $8.00
Annually $79.00


Upgrade to GOLD membership and get unlimited access to our entire library of premium model railroad videos, receive discounts on DVDs, video downloads, and classes in the shop. In addition, you’ll receive nine video downloads, access to GOLD member LIVE events, and so much more!
Annually $145.00

Joe Marateo is a member of the scenery crew at the Model Railroad Club. The bush that he is holding in his hand is from Scenic Express and they are called supertrees. The bush is imported from Scandinavia, and it is similar to the bush found in the western United States. There are some large spurs that need to be pulled off the tree in order to give it the look of an actual tree found in the US.

At the club, they spray the tree to represent the color of the bark. In his right hand is a tree that has already been cleaned and sprayed, this time with a black bark. Some are brown or white for a birch, in the left hand is the tree before this stage.

Scott Dunlap is also a member of the scenery crew at the Model Railroad Club. Next he is going to take the tree that has been prepared, and stick it into a diluted solution of black medium. They started with a concentrated solution of matte medium, poured it in the bucket, added five parts water, and mix thoroughly.

Once mixed, the matte medium solution can last in the bucket for a long time, although each time they have to make sure that it is mixed up thoroughly. One by one, using gloves, Scott places the trees in the matte medium solution, making sure they are totally immersed. Keep each tree in the bucket for at least 30 seconds. Larger trees can be submerged for considerably longer.

In another bucket is some Woodland Scenic coarse ground foam with both medium and dark shades blended together. Whatever shades look best on the layout can be used depending on the lighting and the season to be modeled. The tree is then taken out of the matte medium solution and sprinkled over the top with the foam. For more information on creating realistic forest scene or model railroad scenery trees, visit the Model Railroad Academy website.