Silver Maple tree owners?
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Thread: Silver Maple tree owners?

  1. #1
    Coffin Dodger / Keymaster airhead's Avatar
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    Default Silver Maple tree owners?

    My newest terrain book talks a lot about using catkins from a Silver Maple tree as leaf scatter on dioramas. Anybody out there have some of these and want to donate to the cause or go into business?

    I am not sure if the other maples (red, sugar, etc.) have different catkins or if they are useful.

    Picture of a leaf, catkin and seed:


  2. #2

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    ACK!! I\'ve two mature Silver Maple Trees in my yard and have been picking up thousands and thousands of those things over the years and then dumping them in a compost pile....

    If the catkin is the bottom thing, I had to use a snow shovel to clear my driveway of them this spring. They all fall off if we get a hard frost.

    The seeds are extremely abundant as well. We call them \'helicopters\' because of the way they fall out of the tree.

    What does the book say about preserving the catkins? Do I just stuff em in a bag?

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    Coffin Dodger / Keymaster airhead's Avatar
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    Vikey, I went and reread the book and all I can find is he uses lots of dried silver maple catkins for ground scatter. I guess you would dry them like flowers? Warm dry silica sand.

    let me know when the next crop is ready. (Hudsen & Allen may want to know too.)

  4. #4

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    will do...It won\'t be till next spring though...I could easily fill up half a garbage can, from just the ones on my driveway!

    With your brains and my yard waste, we might just have something here!! (I\'m gonna hold onto my job though, just in case!!)lol

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    Coffin Dodger / Keymaster airhead's Avatar
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    Brains? We don\'t need no stinking brains.

    Def. do not quit your day job.

    got one of those food dehydrators?

  6. #6

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    Nope, but I can get my hands of a type of silica sand we use at my work called \'dessicant\'.....It\'ll suck the moisture out of just about anything...

  7. #7

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    Whats the terrain book, airhead? is it the modelling masterclass one?

    Isn\'t the catkins the same as the infamous H&A forrest litter? only cheaper and probably easier to get hold of? lol

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    Coffin Dodger / Keymaster airhead's Avatar
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    It is an Osprey book:

    Terrain Modelling
    By: Richard Windrow
    ISBN:1841760625


    Looks more like dioramas from fine scale modeler or such. but a few great tips in it make it well worth it.

    And yes, the maple catkins are probably exactly H&A forest litter - which explains why they run out.


  9. #9

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    yeah.got that book - it\'s pretty good for ideas. There\'s another Model Buildings Masterclass in the same series thats worth a look too

  10. #10

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    H & A used something to do with birch trees...Probably the same thing, just a different tree.

  11. #11

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    Yeah probably another type of tree produces catkins, I know for a fact when I was growing up we had a tree that produced them. (used to make great home made itching powder, LOL)

    I know it wasnt a maple but cannot remember for the life of me what it was.

  12. #12

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    I was curious, so I looked it up:

    CATKIN - Usually petal-less flowers arranged in a spike.

    Looks like among the other plants with catkins are alder and birch.

    So what exactly do you do with the catkin after dropping it in a dessicant? Do you pull them apart to get little leaf-like things?

  13. #13
    Coffin Dodger / Keymaster airhead's Avatar
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    Originally posted by Equus
    ...So what exactly do you do with the catkin after dropping it in a dessicant? Do you pull them apart to get little leaf-like things?
    Evidently, the thing is then broken up and the bits look like little scale leaves suitable for ivy and scatter.

    Don\'t know, that is why I am asking.

  14. #14

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    Wonder if it\'s the little seed things on it that make the leaf-like stuff. That\'s pretty cool. I should wander around my yard sometime and see what\'s growing. Heh.

  15. #15

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    Originally posted by Equus
    Looks like among the other plants with catkins are alder and birch.
    Thats what it was it was a silver Birch :)

  16. #16

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    Given the sheer amount of this \'catkin\' that was around at springtime, I\'m sure I can wander around and find some...Its been dry enough here lately, the stuff is most likely ready to use, as is.

    I can post a pic if I find some suitable candidates...

  17. #17

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    That would be cool Vike! Given the amount of trees near my house (I live next to a creek with a small green belt), I\'m sure there\'s SOMETHING useable somewhere on the ground. Heh.

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