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Every year when the stores start putting their Christmas stuff out I look at all their small trees hoping to find one that would be usable with our scale,but they always use needles from a full size fake trees,so they look wrong,I had thought about trimming them down but then the wires they are built with are too big, I saw a pretty nice one this year with smaller needles but they want $30 for it,so last week when we were at our closest Wal Mart,still an hour and a half away,I was walking through their Christmas section and found a pallet with Dwarf Firs,actual live trees,the one I go was in a 4 inch pot and the tree is 19 inches tall,and the needles are only about a 1/4 of an inch long. I was going to cut a hole in my existing bench top near a window but decided to build a new section instead,I transplanted it into a 5 gallon pot and built a shelf under the bench to hold it,I need to cover the particle board with a thin coat of plaster when I do I'll use paper towel right up to the trunk to blend it all together,the tree only cost $10 and if taken care of should last a life time,it's very slow growing so it shouldn't outgrow it's spot in my life time!
 

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Great idea! And very creative solution for 'planting' it. It does look nice next to your figure.
 

· 1:6 Miniature Craftsman
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Every year when the stores start putting their Christmas stuff out I look at all their small trees hoping to find one that would be usable with our scale,but they always use needles from a full size fake trees,so they look wrong
Heh. I do the exact same thing with the exact same results. I've started to learn how to do bonsai because there are no decent fake trees.
 

· 1:6 Miniature Craftsman
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You can cheat by getting a small hedging bush, like a Japanese box and pruning it so it looks like a tree. Proper bonsai takes full-height trees and uses special techniques to stunt their growth but dwarf varieties like the fir you bought are ready to go straight away. Any bush-sized plant with small foliage is suitable.
 

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There is a difference between a regular houseplant and Bonsai. Here you have an outdoor tree placed in an artificial indoor environment. I have worked in the plants industry, and am a gardener.
My friend is a serious bonsai enthusiast and we both have studied that also.

It's very hard to keep these trees alive even with all the classes, and books, tools, etc. needed for Bonsai. They have to live outdoors most of the year. In other words...don't make it into a house plant! Whether you decide to learn root pruning, or just keep houseplants in pots, outdoor plants will have a difficult time surviving. According to this link, you should only keep your dwarf evergreens indoors at Christmas for 10 days, before putting them back outside! Please read this link:
Care for your potted conifers for Christmases to come | Mail Tribune
Care for your potted conifers for Christmases to come | Mail Tribune

Over watering is a common problem with keeping these small trees alive. And they need special drainage and specific soils, and fertilizers that are watered down.

It's fine to make a display out of this, but it probably won't live long as you have put displayed. When you start seeing yellowing and needle drop the tree is dying.

Why not look into making your own G scale (railroad modeling term) trees? Here is an amazing 15 minute video. The beginning is astounding. The rest explains how to do it with simple inexpensive materials and average skills needed. There are plenty of fake miniature pine needles available - often available as "decorator picks" or "swags". Or, you could learn to cast up your own using your live dwarf tree.

G scale Pine Trees ? Model Railroad Scenery ubrailroad - YouTube
 

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Agreed, though with expert flocking, they really can look great. I mean, the figure doesn’t look real either, right? But keeping an outdoor tree indoors, without intensive ongoing care and it’s gonna be guaranteed sickly and or dead eventually. Replacing live trees gets expensive.
 

· 1:6 Miniature Craftsman
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IMO a good miniature is one in which the audience can't tell the difference between it and the real thing. Fake trees spoil that illusion every time. All you have to do is pick a plant that doesn't need much water. The best options are evergreen bushes, with small foliage and flowers, that can be easily pruned to look like full-sized trees. There are thousands to choose from.

There is a whole industry that caters to terrariums and miniature gardens and they have already selected plenty of suitable plants
Miniature Garden Shoppe
Best Plants for Miniature Gardens
Miniature Plants & Trees
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
I contacted the company they sells these trees to Wal Mart,and actually got a reply back,he said if I keep the tree well watered and the trailer doesn't get too hot the tree should do well in it's location. It's been almost two weeks now and so far it seems to be doing good,the summer is going to be the hard part.
 

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I figure if it does die I'm only out $10,then I'll shoot it with hair spray then paint the needles,it'll still look better then the best fake trees I have seen!
Ha ha, I see. I didn't know hair spray would keep the dead needles intact. Hope that works. I did see an amazing life-like 6 inch fake at Target yesterday with the proper scale needles. I thought of you. ��. Happy holidays.
 

· 1:6 Miniature Craftsman
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Yep. Real trees are better and cheaper. Even if you don't get one for free from the garden, it is way cheaper to buy them from a plant nursery than it is to get something from a hobby shop.

Consider the above from Ebern Designs. They are charging $58 for a dead bush stuck in an undersized pot. For $58 I would at least want to see some fake leaves on it. Go to the nursery, they will give you one of their dead plants for free.

 
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