Saturday, 27 July 2013

Crowley OO Gauge Scenic Model Railway Layout Part 20 Modelling Domestic Gardens

Aerial view of Crowley OO gauge model railway layout gardens
I mentioned in my blog post dated 19 July 2013, that I created the OO gauge gardens on Crowley railway layout with irregular plot shapes and areas of sloping ground.
OO gauge vegetable patch and flower borders on Crowley micro layout
I have now ‘planted’ the vegetable patch, flower beds and borders with a wide variety of scratch built OO gauge model flowers, bushes etc.

The vegetable patch has been created on a slope with rows of beetroot, lettuce and seedlings represented using various types of scatter materials.  The strip of dark brown earth represents land which has recently been dug over after a crop has been harvested and is ready to plant.  At the back of the vegetable plot next to a gooseberry bush is the usual heap of dead leaves, twigs, old garden canes etc.  Next to the lawn I have modelled raspberry canes, chives and rhubarb.
OO gauge model railway garden viewed from the bridge on Crowley
Flower beds and borders are often designed with ‘hot’ or ‘cool’ colours grouped separately.  In the garden next to the bridge I have created orange crocosmia and marigolds, red lobelia, yellow loosetrife and saxifrage plus a couple of potentilla shrubs, one yellow and one orange.
OO gauge scratch built topiary in the model gardens on Crowley
‘Next door’ I have created a topiary border along the back fence with a variety of OO gauge clipped and shaped examples of privet, box and conifers.  A red cistus broom sits between the topiary and the ‘cool’ border.  The cool colours border has spires of white campanula in one area and a collection of blue, white, purple and lilac alliums further down.
Scratch built OO gauge dianthus, poppy and delphiniums in the curved border
The curved border next to the wall has red dianthus and poppy flowers with spikes of lemon delphiniums.
Scratch built OO gauge dianthus, alysum, marigolds and dahlias
The long border next to The Railway Inn has red dianthus, yellow alysum and orange marigolds along the front with two patches of red, yellow and orange dahlias behind, separated by potentilla bushes.

As plants flower at different times, I have modelled a few of them ‘green’ representing those which have either flowered or are in bud.  These are dotted here and there in the flower beds and borders.
K&M model fir trees in Crowley model railway layout gardens
I have placed K&M model fir trees in key areas where I wished to add height without the spread associated with many types of deciduous trees.  The tapered shapes also leave more space to appreciate the OO gauge buildings and garden features.

The K&M model fir trees are ‘as bought’ but with trunk areas textured, painted and weathered to create the old, moss/lichen coated appearance.  Note that the larger deciduous K&M trees on Crowley micro layout have had their trunks expanded before detailing.  I feel that thicker trunks create a heavier, more grounded appearance but this is down to personal taste.  I find that the easiest way to create a thicker trunk is to simply wrap masking tape around the original trunk until I think it looks ‘about right’.
Aerial view of Crowley OO gauge model railway gardens
I have approached design of the OO gauge model railway layout gardens in the same way I would design a garden for myself if I owned the house that it belonged to.  I enjoy garden design in real life and so the lessons I have learned over the years have been applied during creation of the OO gauge driveways, paths, lawns etc. on Crowley micro layout.

Crowley is one of my OO gauge scenic model railway layouts.  To see more model railway layout baseboards I have designed and built visit my website

Friday, 19 July 2013

Crowley OO Gauge Scenic Model Railway Layout Part 19 Railway Layout Scenery

Crowley OO gauge railway layout building plots viewed from the bridge
My intention to maintain a regular flow of blog posts did not fit perfectly with the erratic nature of life!  Nevertheless I shall try to pick up where I left off and describe what I have done to Crowley over the last few months.
Crowley model railway layout landscape
With the bridge in place, the first task when creating the model railway scenery for the area behind the station platform was to construct the road and two perfectly level areas for the pub and houses detailed in post dated 25 October 2012.
Building plots at different levels viewed from Crowley station platform
Bases for the pub and houses are a different height helping to develop scenic interest over the layout.  By altering the levels in this way, when viewed from close to track level the roof of each of the buildings is at a different height along the skyline.

I spent a while twisting the bases around to decide the best orientation for each building so that one did not sit parallel to the other or indeed parallel to the station building.  This is important to create a natural appearance.

Whilst deciding the position of buildings, it is advisable to plan roads and pavements at the same time.  Different types of model railway often feature roads with a different appearance.  Model railway layouts built with a city theme will probably require roads with a constant width and which carry more markings for traffic management.

A model railway built as a scenic branch line could feature very simple country lanes.  Roads on rural model railways may be very narrow with few markings if any.  Such roads often have passing places at frequent intervals to allow one vehicle to pull in so that another may pass, particularly useful at harvesting times when large agricultural vehicles are used more frequently.

On Crowley micro layout, I made sure that the road meanders on its way down from the bridge to the station car park.  This makes a minimum space model railway look larger and enables a more gradual incline by increasing the length of the stretch of road.

The model railway landscape was built around the bases for the buildings and the road, incorporating as many smaller scenic features as possible.  The pub car park and the areas next to the houses where the cars can park are each at a slightly different level within the layout scenery.
Aerial view of Crowley micro layout building plots and gardens
I have created lots of variation in height and shape in the garden areas.  Granted some real gardens are flat and rectangular but many houses have gardens on a slope and plots which are oddly shaped and I wanted to illustrate this when creating the plots for the model buildings.
OO gauge model car used to help create roads and driveways
The cars mentioned in my blog post dated 29 October 2012 have been used to help create the driveways at the front and side of the site for the houses.  Road vehicles mentioned in earlier posts were also used to help design the pub car park and access road for brewery dray deliveries.

I have elevated the model railway scenery as much as possible in each area whilst trying at all times to maintain aesthetic balance.  The benefits of this work should become apparent when buildings are added and the gardens developed.

Crowley is one of my OO gauge scenic model railway layouts.  To see more model railway layout baseboards I have designed and built visit my website