How to make a MAPLE inspired topiary tree for Fall!
In the language of flowers, the maple represents earthly happiness. Here in the southern hemisphere, its Spring and I’m delighted to see all the maple bursting into life. The greens at this time of the year are refreshingly lovely as are the flame reds. I’m not sure what captured my attention the most, the fact that they are so vibrant or memories of seeing the amazing array of full-on Fall colour-ways I fell visually in love with during our last trip to the northern hemisphere. It really is incredible how two seasons on different sides of the world could be almost the same, if only briefly. I adore Maple trees and often wish that they could just stay as they are season after season. I’ve tried over the year to bonsai into a topiary form, but they really don’t like being inside and as I discovered they perform as they do naturally - the leaves drop as the season changes. All is not lost though because I think I’ve solved the issue with my very easy to make ‘forever more’ maple topiary tree.
Things to gather:
I used a terracotta cylinder pot 10” tall with a 7” opening.
A terracotta saucer which I glued to the base to create more height and visual interest.
'Liquid Nails’ or similar glue
To form the topiary tree trunk, I used a 20” long x just over 2” heavy cardboard cylinder, alternatively PVC down piping works just as well. If using cardboard, you will also need plastic/food wrap or similar to seal and protect base end or that which will go into the plaster.
You will also need a small amount of Plaster of Paris.
Water to mix plaster. Plaster to water ratio – 2 parts plaster to 1 part water or thereabouts. Once mixed you need to achieve a pancake batter consistency. -
A plastic or water tight container/pot smaller than your terracotta pot. This will be used to support tree trunk.
To cover the trunk I used sheet silver birch bark which I cut into small pieces and glued to cover the above pipe or card cylinder. If you can’t find the sheet bark, an alternative would be to gather bark from real trees.
Little plastic pumpkins. I painted mine white because they visually toned and connected well with the silver birch.
Woodchip, bark or moss to fill and cover workings.
This can also be wonderful to celebrate all that is Fall, Thanksgiving and of course Christmas! Hang a few baubles, thread through some fairy lights and instantly the tree has a new look. Now that’s what I call clever designing!
This is for those who asked for an arrangement that is NOT TOO much FALL and the many who have requested if I could share how to tame down the orange. I enjoy the changing of the colours from late summer into fall, but must admit, that full on fall can be a be dominating in a room.