You’ve reached here with the expectation of learning how to build a terrarium. Before I get to that, it’s helpful to know what a terrarium is best suited for. From our favorite encyclopedia, Wikipedia:
[quote]A terrarium can be formed to create a temperate woodland habitat, and even a jungle-like habitat. This can be created with pebbles, leaf litter and soil. By misting the terrarium, a natural water cycle occurs within the environment by condensation forming on the lid causing precipitation. Many kinds of plants are suitable for these habitats, including bromeliads, African Violets and Crassulaceae.[/quote]
Here are the steps we followed to build our terrarium:
- Find a large jar with a lid and fill it with marbles, pebbles or river rock. Ideally these will be up no larger than 1/4″ and should be spread on the bottom of the jar up-to 2″ deep.
- Add a layer of sphagnum moss on top of the stones. The moss helps prevent the soil that you add from filling up the spaces between the marbles, pebbles or gravel.
- Add a 1/2″ layer of activated charcoal which will help filter the air and prevent odors and excess water build up at the bottom of the jar. From the research I did online, a lot of filters in aquariums use activated charcoals. I ended up crushing some real wood charcoal and using this.
- Add 2-3″ of soil. Depending on the size of the jar you may need more, but, in general try and use a soil that isn’t filled with fertilizers.
- Select the plant for your terrarium and pot the plant to ensure the roots are covered
- Use a mist-spray bottle to water the plant as needed or recommended
- Glass jar or vase with lid
- River rock, marbles or pebbles
- Sphagnum moss
- Activated charcoal
- Mist-Spray bottle