How to make a terrarium – and have a living ornament in less than an hour

Once you find out how to make a terrarium you won't believe it's taken you this long to try it out. I have a few terrariums in my own home, and from experience it only takes an hour or so to create your first one. What's more, you don't need many materials either. Mason jars, goldfish bowls, candy jars and even French presses can all be used to make beautiful containers for DIY terrariums. You can also pick up mini plants cheaply, so it's an inexpensive gardening habit to acquire. I've found that creating a terrarium is one of the most rewarding and easy-to-maintain indoor garden projects you can try. These small, self-contained displays are perfect for adding a natural element to your interiors.


Terrarium plants will grow well in most containers as long as it is properly set up and your terrarium care is correct. 'A terrarium provides a controlled environment for plants, with adequate moisture, light, and air circulation,' explains houseplant expert James Kinsella from Follow these simple steps for making a terrarium and show off some of your favorite mini indoor plants.

You will need:

– A glass or plastic container – A layer of gravel or pebbles – Terrarium soil potting mix at Amazon – Activated charcoal – A selection of mini plants suitable for a terrarium – Spoon for placing soil – Long tweezers for adding materials to the container – Moss and other decorations

1. Choose The Right Container

This is one of the most important things to get right when learning how to make a terrarium for the first time. The good news is there's lots of flexibility when choosing a container for your self-contained indoor garden.

2. Add A Layer Of Gravel Or Pebbles To The Base

Add a layer of gravel or pebbles, such as these polished river rocks at Amazon, to the bottom of the container. This will help with drainage and prevent the roots of the plants from sitting in water, which will be detrimental to their health.

3. Layer Up The Right Potting Soil

Make sure you use a soil that is right for terrariums, as regular garden potting soil can contain fertilizers that your mini plants don't need.

4. Choose And Arrange Your Plants

Choose plants that are suitable for terrariums, such as ferns, mosses, and small indoor succulents. Or you could go for a tropical look with an orchid terrarium. Get creative and mix up the plants, colors and sizes, just as you would with your outdoor container gardening ideas.

5. Add The Finishing Touches

Once your plants are in place, it's time to add decorations to your terrarium, such as rocks, shells, and other mini figurines of your choice. You can even turn it into a Christmas terrarium by adding a few festive ornaments to the mix. Just make sure not to overcrowd it, and leave enough space for your plants to grow.

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