Holly Farrell says that lack of space isn't a problem for the miniature garden grower. If you don't have much outdoor space, stick to these tips from "The Miniature Garden Grower."
"Before choosing a container," Farrell says, "consider whether your choice of plant is practical for a terrarium." Everything has to fit through the neck of the vessel and should survive well in containement.
When it comes to picking plants, "choose plants appropriate to where you will be putting the container - is it warm or cool? How much light will it get? Keep terrariums in bright light, but out of direct sunlight, or the plants will scorch," Farrell says. "The leaves will grow toward the brightest source, so rotate the container regularly to maintain even growth."
Farrell has some planting tips: use a funnel made from paper to add your gravel and soil to direct where it is being poured. "Remove as much soil as possible from the plants' roots, and trim long roots if necessary in order to fit the plants through narrow-necked containers and into the potting soil layer." Kitchen tongs can also be useful for moving plants around inside the container.
Open terrariums need some moisture, which is best applied with a spray bottle to avoid over watering. "Once sealed, closed terrariums should not need any maintanance other than to clean the oustide of the glass," Farrell says. "It may also be necessary to to periodically trim back plants that are becoming too large."
As far a decorations go, Farrell says using objects to decorate a terrarium is a matter of personal taste. "Natural materials can complement a planting, such as pieces of terracotta, stone, or wood," she says. Decorations can also interest children in the project, so involving toys can be an attention-grabber.
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