Turn Junk Drawer Finds Into Cheap Model Railroad Scenery

Model railroading is a great hobby that allows you to create miniature worlds that are both fun and educational. But if you’re looking to save money on your model railroad, why not try making your own scenery?

One of the easiest and most affordable ways to make scenery for your model railroad is to use natural twine. Twine is a versatile material that can be used to create a variety of different bushes and trees. Also easily found around your house.

What You’ll Need

  • Natural twine
  • Static grass
  • White glue
  • Scissors
  • Brown spray paint
  • Hair spray
  • Various shades of green ground foam


  1. Cut the twine into small pieces. The length of the pieces will depend on the scale of your model railroad. For N scale, you’ll want to cut the twine into pieces about 1/2 inch long. For HO scale, you’ll want to cut the twine into pieces about 1 inch long.
  2. Place a piece of cardboard on your work surface.
  3. Place a large blob of glue in the center of the twine. Use your fingers to make sure it soaks into the fibers. Make sure the glue only is in the center.
  4. Let the glue dry completely.
  5. Once dry, use your scissors to cut the twine into two thru the glued part. This will keep the strands together and give a good base to glue to your layout.
  6. Spread the unglued ends of the twine apart to represent branches. Use your scissors to shape the bush.
  7. Use your brown spray paint to coat the twine to make it look like branches.
  8. While the spray paint is still wet, sprinkle with static grass. Add some more paint and let dry completely.
  9. Use hair spray to add additional layers of foam and secure all the foam to the bush.
  10. Add the bush to your layout and enjoy!


  • Use different colors of spray paint and ground foam to create different types of bushes.
  • For a more realistic look, use a variety of different lengths of twine.
  • Add some leaves to the bushes by gluing on small pieces of green felt or flocking.


Creating model railroad bushes using natural twine is a fun and easy way to add some greenery to your layout. This tutorial is easy to follow and can be used regardless of the scale you model. So get creative and have fun!

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *