I am looking to make fake soil. I would like the end result to look as close as possible to real soil, but be made up of solid parts that do not create goo, dust or other residue. I have tried coffee with glue but it is not solid enough. What should I use for this?

  • Hi @rachel1. Please be more clear about what you are doing with it. Apr 14, 2018 at 10:38

2 Answers 2


I presume you are talking about model-building. You can try mixing sawdust and sand with some burnt sienna acrylic. Apply it to your surface while the paint is still wet. When the paint has dried, drybrush it with a lighter brown over it.


I've seen (dyed) crumbs of cork used as fake soil. You'd probably need to mix it with glue (diluted PVA perhaps) then sprinkle a last layer on top and dust off any excess, to hide the glue.

"Granulated cork" looks like a good search term. It's available in a range of particl sizes, so you could use the fine stuff for scale models, and something coarser if it should look life-size.

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