How to Make the Perfect Terrarium | Living the Country Life
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How to Make the Perfect Terrarium

Tiny terrariums can condense big concepts into small spaces. The plant ingredients and figurines are personal, but the procedure for creating the base and inserting the elements remains the same. With the right method, you can compose a terrarium that remains fresh long after you’ve closed the lid on the scene.
  • Bryan McCay

    Terrarium Materials

    • Clear glass container with an opening large enough to insert plants

    • Gloves

    • Clean ½ - to ¼-inch pebbles

    • Bowl

    • Dried sphagnum moss

    • A dowel for tamping

    • Moistened potting soil

    • A wooden spoon

    • Terrarium plants such as ferns, mini philodendrons, and palm seedlings

    • Oversize tweezers

    • Lichen, stones, driftwood, shells, bits of nature

    • Figurines (let your fantasy flow!)

    • Turkey baster or small measuring cup

    Date Published: October 31, 2016
    Date Updated: November 2, 2016
  • Photograph by Bryan McCay

    Step 1: Pebbles

    Create a 1- to 2-inch layer (depending on the size of the glassware) of pebbles into the base of the container.

    Date Published: October 31, 2016
    Date Updated: November 2, 2016
  • Photograph by Bryan McCay

    Step 2: Soak Moss

    Fully moisten the sphagnum moss in a bowl and wring out the excess water to avoid introducing too much water into the terrarium.

    Date Published: October 31, 2016
    Date Updated: November 2, 2016
  • Photograph by Bryan McCay

    Step 3: Moss Layer

    Insert a thin layer of sphagnum moss into the container and tamp it down with a dowel.

    Date Published: October 31, 2016
    Date Updated: November 2, 2016
  • Photograph by Bryan McCay

    Step 4: Soil

    Spoon 1 inch of moistened soil into the container, tamping it down.

    Date Published: October 31, 2016
    Date Updated: November 2, 2016
  • Photography by Brian McCay

    Step 5: Plants

    Unpot one of your mini plants, and massage the roots to loosen them before inserting the plant into the container with a pair of tweezers. Carefully place it firmly into the soil and repeat with additional plants to create the greenery. Don’t crowd the plants; leave some room between each one for them to grow.

    Date Published: October 31, 2016
    Date Updated: November 2, 2016
  • Photograph by Bryan McCay

    Step 6: Fill Gaps

    Add soil to fill in the gaps and tamp it to fully firm the plants in place.

    Date Published: October 31, 2016
    Date Updated: November 2, 2016
  • Photograph by Bryan McCay

    Step 7: Add Ambiance

    With a tweezers, insert the details that enhance your scene: lichen, stones, twigs, natural objects, and figurines.

    Date Published: October 31, 2016
    Date Updated: November 2, 2016

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