DIY Plant Terrarium
Little jungle for your home
Ever since I learned about hydroponic gardening, I have also been wanting to try another ‘plants in glass’ project – the DIY plant terrarium! Not long ago I bought an amazing book Indoor Plants and I was inspired to make my own little jungle in a glass container. Plants offer an amazing sense of slow living oasis, a unique combination of life and calm. But you can take the indoor nature aesthetic even further by planting your gorgeous plants into a glass pot.
There are specific types of plants that will do very well completely without soil, thriving in water. And there are also plants ideal for making DIY plant terrarium. The most commonly used plants are cactuses or succulents. Usually, they need a lot of light and little watering. In fact, the sunlight tends to be what keeps them happy the most, and you can only water them once they ask you. You will recognize it by observing the bottom leaves shrink as the plants drives all moisture upwards.
Ready to make your own DIY plant terrarium? Here is what you’ll need!
Do you love the beauty of plants and indoor gardening? Did you enjoy this project? Keep it by pinning to one of your ‘Plants & Nature’ or ‘Gardening’ Pinterest boards!
DIY Plant Terrarium
- plants suitable for DIY plant terrarium such as succulents or cactuses
- potting soil of your choice, from regular potting soil for indoor plants to sandy mix to decorative perlite potting mix
- handpicked pieces of nature such as stones, moss or a bark
- glass container of your choice
The choice of the plants for your DIY plant terrarium will determine the type of soil you should use. Sandy potting mix or stones are amazing for cactuses, you can also choose regular indoor plant potting mix if you chose to make a hydrophilous terrarium – in other words one with plants which need to be watered more frequently and prefer moist, steamy environment. I chose to make a xeric DIY plant terrarium – mostly dry with succulents and pieces of nature.
For my terrarium I chose three common types of succulents – Callisia, Haworthia and Sedum. And since I used a mix of potting soil, I also planted a fallen branch of Boston Ivy for more decoration. In my local flower shop they also had an amazing hanging botanical glass pot on sale so I decided to use it. However, there are other types of glass containers you can use if you don’t want to go for the typical option.
If you prefer to reduce the investment, there are several upcycling options from a large pickled veggetables glass jar to an old glass fish aquarium. If you’re quite creative and enjoy unusual decoration, you can use a glass tea pot or even the french press! For those looking for a really fancy and quite large piece, there is the big glass bottle option which you can typically find in a regular garden supplies store. You may even be able to upcycle an old big wine or oil glass bottle.
Whichever glass container you’ve chosen, wash it thoroughly before planting. Begin by adding sand/stone mix as the bottom layer. This layer will ensure that the plants and the upper soil layers don’t stand in a water. The microclima for succulents should by dry and light, with enough opening to prevent any steam formation. Then insert the next layer, I used a mix of regular indoor plants potting mix and the sand mix, to make sure the potting soil is suitable for the xeric plants.
Then make small holes depending on how deep the roots of your plants are. I chose very small succulents so I made three small holes and inserted the plants. I also planted the Boston Ivy branch into the most moist layer of the potting soil.
Lastly, I added some decorative pieces of nature such as stones and a small piece of moss. The moss is amazing for absorbing moisture to keep the DIY plant terrarium dry for the rest of the plants.
Care & Placement
As I already mentioned above, succulents require dry environment. Make sure the glass container has large enough opening so the plants can ‘breathe’. Water occasionally and to not let the terrarium soil sit in water. Place the DIY plant terrarium in a sunny place to make sure the plants get enough light, but not in direct sunlight which could burn the leaves. Succulents usually don’t need to be fertalized.
If you see that your plants are unhappy, consider the common signs. When especially the bottom leaves of the succulent plant are shrinking and falling off, you need to water the plant (but more like let the water run through the roots rather than let the plant sit in water). If however the leaves begin yellowing, the plant has been overwatered.