Other sources for 3D models?

Hi all, I’m a garden designer using a somewhat specialized plant palette, and quite often I can’t find the plants I need in 3D Warehouse. Are there other sources (paid or otherwise) for Sketchup-compatible 3D plant models? I’ve poked around a bit on Google and haven’t really found what I’m looking for. I’ve tinkered with various importer plugins and file types that aren’t compatible with Sketchup, but as I’m a somewhat tech-hesitant horticulturist, I’d ideally like to find something straightforward and easy to use.

Thanks :slight_smile:

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It’s worth checking that when you searched for plants you had the Models tab selected. The Products tab is unlikely to show many plants.

What is an example plant you’re looking for?

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have you looked at the RPC content from Archvision https://archvision.com/rpc/ its a paid site and they have hundreds of plants.

I’ve made a few face me models in a pinch, but they just don’t look very professional.

Thanks, this looks promising!

Thanks, I am searching for models and not products.

I use native plants of the east coast of the US. A lot of our common natives (like Echinacea) are available, but I’m coming up empty on things like Kalmia latifolia or Actaea racemosa. Searching common names doesn’t seem to help. I can occasionally find 2D face me elements but these aren’t really suitable for what I’m doing.

might expand your search query to include “plant entourage”

When I’m searching in 3D Warehouse, or elsewhere? What does the “entourage” signify?

entourage is thinks like plants, cars, people that can be inserted into models for final images. Back in the dark ages we used to trace entourage out a book of images

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I am an architect so plants for me are more “entourage” than representatives of defined species. I find that 2D face-me plants are most often quite enough for my needs. Of course, they look like nothing in plan views, so I usually combine them with a 2D plan image on a separate layer
Combined plant:

Plant in 3D views:

What is shown in plan (to get a nice shadow the “disc” is above ground level:

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Oh this is interesting, thank you! I often can squeak by with models that approximate the plant I need (tall, spiky foxglove substituted for tall, spiky black cohosh, for example) but my clients usually want to see detailed depictions of the true plants.

the 2d face me trees keep down the file size. A lot of people on the forum import 3d models of the whole plant and then suffer from the file size growing out of control.

If I remember correctly, Skatter $$ has plants, etc.

yeah, a good question is, what will you do with the SU file ?

do you show it raw ? or export raw images and show them ? or do you use a render tool (vray, twinmotion…)
or do you simply go to photoshop and go with it ?

Because if you use raw SU images, then you’re pretty much stuck between 2d, ugly and heavy.
if you use a renderer, then you should check their libraries, they might have what you need.
if you photoshop stuff, you could photoshop your trees in, either tree photos or with the tree tool.

My background is in landscape as well and I know how hard it is to find good models (for free anyway). There are lots of good resources out there but keep in mind that plants in 3D, often have lots to parts (stems, leaves, flowers, etc). And these all add up in your model, affecting performance. The best option is to use a rendering extension - therefore sending the plant information directly to the renderer - freeing up the need to show all that detail in your model.

I know you mentioned being ‘tech-hesitant’ but that will be the best option. For example Lumion, Enscape and V-Ray (Rendering extensions/programs) all offer fairly robust plant libraries (ex: Lumion Library)

I personally like using Laubwerk - which comes with a plugin to help choose and select plant variety. For example, each Laubwerk plant comes with 3 varieties, 3 ages, and 4 seasons - which gives you 36 plant options per species. With 10 per bundle (comes at a cost of course) you get 360 plants available to you.

Ex: Japanese Maple - Rendered

Japanese Maple - Low-poly for in your model

You could also check out FormFonts - FormFonts 3D Models & Textures - which is subscription based last I checked so it may end up being a better deal depending on your needs. These plants/models are also optimized for SketchUp so less needed for rendering extension.

Lastly, if you do purchase plants from outside sources (like the one below)…they sometimes support SketchUp format but often don’t. If you go that route, I recommend an importer such as Skimp of Transmutr. - both allow you to reduce the geometry count should you find yourself needing to keep a more detailed plant file manageable.


You can also create the plants you need yourself, as low-poly models, SketchUp/LayOut ready.


SU is great for hard landscaping but if you want to get a wide range of quality landscaping you should consider pairing it with TWINMOTION for your soft landscaping and visualisations… still a very low cost but professional option

Globeplants.com is one of the bigger resources for plant assets

What I would say is that models generally get painful quickly when you are using 3D plants - so I would consider using billboard plants or proxies via a rendering package that handles foliage better than SketchUp does.

I like twinmotion for anything plant heavy.