Thursday, July 9, 2015

Modeling an orange grove (Part 3)

The first row of orange trees is planted. In the meantime I learned some new facts about the "old" method of irrigation. Every row of orange trees has two ditches or furrows on each side. One close to the stem and the other along the drip line of the trees. Unfortunately my ditches were already cut and the ground cover in, so I only have one ditch on each side.







I've found the two photos above on the Library of Congress site. The left picture shows a weir at the head of a row of orange trees, with the irrigation furrows on both sides. The right view also shows two standpipes that distribute the water to the weirs via underground pipeline. Both pictures were shot in an orchard in Arlington Heights, Riverside, California

I tried Woodland Scenics Realistic Water to fill the ditches with water, but found the next morning that everything had dried up an the water was gone. I wanted that a "wet" look remains along the ditches so I thought that some kind of varnish could possibly do the trick.

A bottle of Testors Glosscote came in handy (I rarely use the glossy). With a pipette or eye dropper I filled the ditches again and the gloss seeped into the ground around the ditch leaving a wet appearance

My first batch of trees was ready to plant. In Part 2 I described how I upbraded the uniform Life Like orange trees with added foliage and Woodland Scenics oranges. To plant the trees I cut the simulated roots platform off and pushed the trunk as far into the hole in the ground until the trunk was completely inserted. On mature trees, the trunks are not visible.

 Now I only need to upgrade some 35 Woodland Scenics trees to fill the rest of the orchard

 The Life Like "wire bottle brush" trees look very realistic after additional foliage is added and they are a cheap alternative versus other brands ready made trees and less messy than the self made sponge trees. In fact no manufacturer produces realistic citrus trees at the moment, leaving us modelers to our own ingenuity.

 In the meantime I also started to scenic the surroundings of the orchard. First was the country road that I made from 3mm thick cork and painted it asphalt grey. Weeds and grass along the road will finish off this scene.

Please stand by for more on modeling an orange grove!

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