grow terrarium! grow!

Project 1

I’ve finally made a closed terrarium. That was the project I’ve been working on. It’s taken me so long as I’ve struggled to find the plants suitable for a closed terrarium then when I’ve found them I’ve not been able to find a stockist.

I found the jar at a car boot sale and been dying to use it.

A couple of weeks ago I went out into the garden and collected some moss. I decided to keep it in a sandwich box until I was ready to start the project. This also gave me a chance to see if the moss would suit a closed environment.

When assembling the terrarium I started by putting in a layer of stones for drainage followed by a layer of charcoal pieces, this helps to filter the water and to combat any unpleasant smells. I managed to find the charcoal my local pet shop in the bird’s aisles. After that, I put a layer of mixed soil and perlite, again to promote good drainage. I then started to arrange the plants I had selected. I first put in the spider plant with it being the biggest, then the babies tears and then the ivy. I arranged to moss in any spaces left. I then popped in my dino for a bit of decoration.

 Lastly, I watered it. I filled it up to just below where the small stones end, this ensures that the soil will have the chance to dry out a little. Making sure that the water is not in contact with the soil is essential as this will stop any forms of root rot. I’m really happy with the effect and have really enjoyed making the terrarium. I now have my own jungle in a jar and it’s also a fab way to teach kids about the water cycle.

5

I have always loved succulents. Their rubbery little leaves, interesting shapes and patterns and the fact that they almost don’t look like plants, but strange little alien vegetables or life-forms.

From the beginning I knew I’d try both moss and succulent terrariums, and after a little research I discovered that mosses seem to thrive best in closed containers, and succulents in open ones. Unfortunately, my moss terrariums have either been blighted with these little stupid flies (I don’t think I managed to rinse all the eggs out of my collected pieces) and/or just not looking very happy.
They’ve now all been de-figurined and put outside with the lids slightly open for better air circulation and to let the stupid flies out.

Since that knock to my gardening ability, I’ve been putting off planting these up for a good few weeks (I had my first plants and cuttings for easily a month before planting them) because I was scared I’d do it wrong, that they would die and/or look awful, but I finally bit the bullet last week and spent an entire sunny afternoon cautiously planting up my first one (photo 2)

Well, that boosted my confidence tenfold, and I put together my second two yesterday. I’m really chuffed with how they’ve turned out! And hopefully I wont kill these (I should be able to water them lightly once a week/fortnight while they establish their roots) I have a silver dish and a couple of bonsai trays I’ll be planting up with my others, once I’ve figured out my configurations and where to put them in the house!