Sunday, October 25, 2009

My new love of DIY terrariums

I got inspired to make a few terrariums when I saw this etsy seller, weegreenspot, featured a couple of weeks ago. She made the cutest terrariums with lichen/moss from the redwoods of the northeast. Often she would include a little creature like a deer or hobbit to live in these mini-forests. I wish I could get a'hold of some of this soft beautiful moss, but alas-- Houston is not really overflowing with moss. I was still inspired, however, especially since the cooler weather is upon us and I like the feeling of living in a lush surrounding even in the bleakness of winter (as bleak as the south can get). In case you are interested, terrariums are basically small ecosystems created in a container. They usually require low light and little watering.

I started picking up pieces of terrarium materials with my purchase of a square glass terrarium from Smith & Hawken. Don't worry, it was on-sale because they were having a store closing so I picked up a $50 terrarium for $24. Awesome!

Hence, the terrarium constructing began. Also, in the madness of terrarium supply shopping I also decided to pick up some winter greens plants that included kale, arugula, butter lettuce, and spring greens mix. These were later placed in my little red container after I cleaned out the dead okra and cucumber plants from the summer container garden.

Back to terrarium construction....

Materials needed:
- glass container with top (i.e.; jars, clouche, aquariums)
- soil (I got organic soil from the local garden store and combined it with some sand for draining)
- pebbles (I got them at Pet Smart)
- activated charcoal
- plants of choice (I picked up an african violet, tillandsia, and different fern varietals and also found some pre-packaged moss)
- In addition, I went to target and picked up a glass candy jar for a second terrarium.

Basically it is a layering construction method with pebbles on the bottom, charcoal, then soil, plants, and finally water.

I had a great time making mine and now they have added a splash of color and comfort to my house. Honestly I could make more and more of these, but may have to stop at some point.

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