Monday, April 27, 2015

How to make a succulent terrarium.

Mother's Day is just around the corner and a homemade terrarium will be the perfect gift for her.  First, you will have to buy a few items that can be found at a local gardening store or you can look at your local Target store.  Let's start with the tools and materials you will need.


Materials needed: 
Glass Container
Potting Soil for Succulents
Gardening Charcoal
Small Rocks 
Various Succulent Plant Clippings
Dry Moss 
Small Decorations 

Terrarium

How to get started:
1. Start with a medium size glass container. You can use a recycled pickle jar similar to the kind you find at Costco or even a clear vase.  I found the most popular jar for this craft is a medium size fish bowl.  I suggest you look around your kitchen cabinet first and recycle instead of buy.  Really any medium size glass jar will do. 

terrarium

2. Once you have your glass container, you will need to add small pebbles or rocks.  The rocks will help with drainage preventing the roots from rotting.  The rocks can be found at your local gardening center or in nature.  You will need enough small rocks to cover 1 to 2 inch layer of the bottom of your glass container. 

Terrarium

3. Use the charcoal to help with odor, control moisture and improve drainage. Use enough to cover about 1/2" above the rocks.  Please see the picture below to see what it should like when you are done. 



4. Buy Potting Soil for succulents.  Use enough to cover the bottom of the container so that half of the container is filled.  By now, you should have three layers inside the container. One layer was small rocks, second layer was charcoal and third is the potting soil. 

terrarium

5. Use various succulent clippings or buy small containers of the different types to add to the soil.  Choose the plants based on your tastes and what appeals to your eye.  Make sure that you place the plant approximately 1/2" into the soil making sure it can take root.  Tip: Colorful plants make a terrarium more attractive. 

Terrarium

5. Moss is used to decorate the terrarium and as decor to cover the soil.  It also acts as protection for the plants.  Now, you can start decorating the terrarium with decorative rocks, shells, ceramic animals or  plastic bugs.  Use your imagination and enjoy.


Photo Credit: NASA
Something to think about:
Quote directly from the NASA Kids page: "A terrarium has its own mini-climate. The container has just a small opening or sometimes even a lid to completely enclose the container. That makes a terrarium like a greenhouse. Sunlight enters through the glass and warms the air, soil and plants the same way that sunlight coming through the atmosphere warms Earth’s surface. The glass holds in some of the warmth, just as Earth’s atmosphere does."


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