by: Henk Meerdink [ ]
Treemendus supply a wide variety of diorama materials, and one of those materials is Raw Grass. This 'wild grass' can be used to create an area of high grass, or smaller tufts of vegetation. It is supplied in A4 and A3 sized ‘sheets’, and can easily be trimmed with scissors. The maximum length of the strands after cutting them from the backing is around 1.5 cm. Current prices on the Treemendus website are £3.50 for an A4 sheet, and £7.00 for an A3 sheet.
a closer look
The material is also known as Teddy Fur, which is not surprising, as that is what it is, and consequently the fur lays down, rather than stand up (as most commercial grass mats would). The material is a distinct Light Brown colour,but with a fair bit of variety of shading, which is fine for grass around the Autumn period If required, it can be coloured, although I would paint the grass with an airbrush,after it is applied, rather than before.
To use the material as grass, you really need to cut the material from the backing, because simply applying a trimmed to size sheet, and brushing the grass up, is not really giving a satisfactory and realistic result. If you trim the material from the backing, and apply it in smaller ‘clumps’, a very good effect can be achieved, because the fur material is soft enough to avoid standing up like rigid clumps, without laying down flat (which is a perpetual problem with other commercial railway scatter grass). I found it particularly effective as smaller clumps of higher wild grass, such as found at the edge of a wooded area, around clearings and tracks etc.
not just grass
Apart from use as a grass on a diorama base, there are a number of other uses for which this material is, possibly even more so, suitable. One application I found is as a thatched roof, were the sheet can be used as it is, simply trimmed to size. It is also a good material to use for the quite distinctive way in which the Dutch and German AFV crews camouflage their vehicles on exercise in NW Europe, where they will stick large amounts of long grass into the camouflage netting.
All Treemendus products can be ordered from the Treemendus website, or purchased direct at various modelshows around the country, details of which can be found on the website.