Orchards and their Necessity to Society.

25 09 2011

Ok… I don’t know that orchards really are such a necessity but I was at a loss for a title  this week and Abigail seemed to think this would work.  Go Ab.

Orchards play a recurring role on the civil war battlefield (The Peach orchard at Gettysburg for instance).  Orchards provide opportunities for cover which soldiers like without all that nasty underbrush which makes movement such a chore.  And… if the battle wears on, and it’s the right time of year (or you don’t mind green fruit) you could have an apple or two during the fight.

In McPherson and Revenge, an orchard:

  • Provides +1 cover modifier for morale checks and being shot at.  Yeah! 
  • Has no impact on movement.
  • Is a a source for material used to create improvised cover

Creating Orchards

To make my life easier (and this blog entry shorter) I start with completed trees

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Single tree stands of both the light and dark green variety are used to create peach and apple trees.

To create an apple tree I put drops of thinned glue onto the true using my glue applicator.

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I then dunk the tree into a container of scenic forest’s “apples”.  This stuff is basically just tiny round pellets covered in (sadly) water soluble red paint.

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This does not work well.  There is just enough a static charge to make the apples stick without actually being glued.  Really… this is a pain.  Please try a different method and let me know how it works.  Pretty please.

I “coated” my light green trees with apples and my dark green trees with peaches

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There is a slight scale problem here as you can see.  As small as the fruit is, it looks like the tree is being pulled up by its roots by colorful helium filled balloons.  It looks better on the table than it does in a close up photo so I can live with it.

Next step… I spray matte finish on the trees in a vain effort to get the fruit to stay on the tree.

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This doesn’t work of course but it makes me feel better and after an afternoon of mucking with tiny fruit spraying things with glue is very relaxing.

Here are some of these orchards in action!

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Most projects I present in this blog are pretty much all successful.  I rarely feel like I finish with a compromised result.  This project is a sort of exception.  It was more work than it should have been and there was one really disappointing “gothcha” I ran across that I never found a work around for.

The fruit is covered is a really water soluble paint and the glue is water based.  This caused me no end of trouble as the red and orange paint came off the fruit and stained the trees.  A number of orchard tress had to be thrown out as I learned how to work with this material.  Were I to do this over again I would likely use the spray matte to attach the fruit.  I have doubts this would work but the fruit would at least not run onto the tree.

The final result is “good enough” but this is my least favorite project to date mostly because neither the process nor the finished result matched my expectation.  boo.

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