In the last few years, terrariums, those small decorative plant gardens in a glass container that can be hung or placed on a piece of furniture, have been making a comeback. Although it is possible to use tropical plants in miniature format to compose terrariums, it is often cacti and succulents that take the lead. In addition to being cute, terrariums are quite simple to make and do not require much maintenance. It’s even a great activity to do with your kids to introduce them to the joy of gardening and to exercise their creativity. Here’s how to create your own terrarium at home.
To begin your project, visit your favourite garden centre to pick up all the materials you need to create your miniature garden. Craft and hobby stores can also provide you with some decorative elements that will allow you to personalize your terrarium even more.
You will need :
- Glass container of your choice. The larger the opening, the easier it is to place plants and other decorative elements in it
- Cactus & Succulent Potting Mix
- Sphagnum moss
- Small cacti or succulents
- Pebbles (for the bottom)
- Sand, small rocks, coloured beads or other to cover the soil
- Decorative elements of your choice: pieces of wood, shells, figurines, etc.
How to make a terrarium – steps
Once you have all your materials together, all you have to do is create the layers and set up your terrarium.
- Place a 2 to 3 cm layer of pebbles at the bottom of your glass container. The pebbles will catch excess water.
- Add sphagnum moss to the gravel bed. This layer of about 2 cm will act as a filter.
- Place a layer of potting soil for cacti and succulents. Your layer of potting soil should be thick enough to hold the entire root ball of your plants.
- Then plant your plants, starting with the larger ones. As much as possible, keep the leaves from touching the edges of the pot. Be sure to choose plants that have the same water and light requirements. This will make for a healthier cohabitation.
- Pack the potting soil lightly around the roots and add a little more if necessary.
- Cover the potting soil with sand or small decorative stones and insert your decorations until you are satisfied with the result.
- Place your terrarium near a well-lit window, but without direct sunlight and away from heat sources.
- Wait a few weeks before watering your creation again.
Maintenance of terrariums
The maintenance of your terrarium is rather simple. Just water when the soil is dry and remove any dead or wilted leaves as soon as they appear. If some plants get too big and start to take up too much space in the container, you can prune them.
If you wish, you can make your terrarium evolve with the seasons. Add a small string of LED lights and cover the soil with artificial snowflakes for the holidays, for example, or replace the shells that adorn your creation with chocolate eggs and coloured stones for Easter. Don’t hesitate and have fun!