small cacti

Bring the Desert Indoors: How to Make a Terrarium

May 23, 2013 | DIY Home Improvement, Handy How-Tos

Living in a small apartment, you may be craving a bit of the outdoors once in awhile. If your thumb is anything but green, you can create your own DIY terrarium in a cinch. Always forget to water your plants? No problem–succulents and other desert plants don’t need a lot of moisture, so these bad boys are incredibly low-maintenance. They’ll give a boost of oxygen to your apartment and quickly add natural décor. Here’s how to make a terrarium to bring the outdoors into your abode.

The Ideal Container

One of the great things about terrariums is that you can use any kind of container. Whether you’d like to hang it from the wall or place it on your kitchen table, you can choose from a variety of styles and shapes to create your terrarium. You can even use a red wine glass or snifter! If you have furry friends that may poke their nose into your terrarium, you may want a container with a small hole that allows for airflow.

Fill it Up

After you’ve chosen your ideal container, it’s time to fill it up! You’ll want to start with some river rocks on the bottom layer, followed by gardening charcoal, which helps to keep the soil fresh in your terrarium. Quick tip: Wash the river rocks before adding them to your terrarium to get rid of any chemicals or harmful debris that could hinder the growth of your plants. Then, fill the jar up about one-third of the way with fresh, nutrient rich soil formulated for cacti.

You’ll want to carefully add a few succulents or cactus plants to the container, top off with a bit more soil, and add a small layer of river rocks. Voilá! You’ve got a beautiful desert right in the middle of your urban pad.

Herb Terrarium

You can make an herb terrarium with a closed container–an ideal solution for apartment dwellers who want fresh herbs but don’t have outdoor space. The confined space allows for moisture circulation from the plants. All you need to do is water it when it looks dry and place it in some sunlight. If you notice condensation along the container walls, take the top off for about 15 minutes.

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