Enclosed container used for growing plant for decorative or ornamental purposes is known as terarrium. The first terrarium was developed by botanist Nathaniel Bagshaw Ward in 1842.
Types of Terrarium:
Terrarium can be classified into following types;
- Closed terrarium:
Container walls are kept sealed and create unique environment for plant growth. Transparencies of container walls allow heat and light to enter into container and result in hydrological cycle. Moisture from media and plant evaporates and condenses on the walls of container and falls back to the plants, this creates ideal environment for the plant to grow and watering is only needed after 3 to 6 months. If water is added in excess amount, open the seal so that excess water starts evaporating into the air.
- Open terrarium:
Container is not completely enclosed but is left open from one side. Water requirement is higher than closed type terrarium. Open terraria also work well for plants that require more direct sunlight.
How to create terarrium:
- Prepare your glass container
Clean the glass container, remove unnecessary things from it.
- Add your drainage layer
Use rocks and pebbles at the bottom
- Add the activated charcoal
Use layer of activated charcoal to protect the terarrium from bad odor
- Add the soil
It will help the roots of plants to grow;
- Add accessories
- Start Planting
- Prepare your plants
- Pour water
- Clean the container
Selection of plants:
Following are the plants that can survive together in dry to moist conditions and they well suited to grow in an indoor environment:
Alternanthera, Baby tears, Silver Nerve Plant, Variegated Spider Fern, Peperomia, Starfish Plant, Aquamarine, Golden Clubmoss, Air plant etc
Maintenance of Terrarium:
- Check for the moisture level, use spray bottle for watering only if the soil is dry.
- Good air circulation is necessary to avoid the fungal problems especially when flowering plants are used.
- Place the terrarium in low to medium light for the plants to grow nicely. Glass magnifies the sun rays, it should be kept out of direct sun else the garden gets over heated/ cooked over.
- Potting mixture has already enough nutrients to last for long time, the need for fertilizer not required.
- Remember to keep pruning of plants to keep the desired shape and size.
- Remove the dead and rotting leaves otherwise they might gather in terrarium.
- By using towel and water, clean the glass container and wipe out any condensation formed inside the terrarium container.
- Keep checking for fungus and algae.
Theme in Terrarium;
Desert Terrarium: In desert terrarium, firstly pebbles are placed in the container then half inch layer of activated charcoal is usually added for removal of bad odor, then cover it by one inch layer of sphagnum moss and fill the container with soil and add layer of sand at the top.
Colorful stones are placed on the sand in pleasing manner and hardy plants are planted like cactus and succulent. Water application should be after 3 to 6 months.
Beach Themed Terarriums: For bottom layer of container, pour the sand in the glass container, then place your largest shell in front of container, lay a smaller shell just behind a conch shell. Follow up with placing an upside down shell to the left of your driftwood.
This will soon be the home of an air plant. To add a shimmer of glam, lay a rhinestone jewel pick in the center of the container. It’s time to plant your plants in aesthetic way.
Forest Themed Terarriums: Add layer of ½ inch of sand in the bottom of the bowl. Insert the roots of chosen plants into it. Add another 1 inch of dirt to bowl to ensure the plant is sturdily planted in the soil. Slowly add water depending on the size of container.