Sustainable terrarium

Kaia and I came across this article about a man who started a terrarium in 1960.  He stopped watering it in 1973 and it has lived, sealed up, since then.  The plants, soil, and water have created a sustainable system. Kaia was intrigued by this idea and wanted to try to start her own.  Here’s what we did:

We found this jar at Target.  It’s probably about 2 or 2 1/2 gallons.  The top has a rubber seal to help keep the moisture in (and other stuff out).


Kaia used some gravel and marbles to fill the bottom 2 inches.  This will help with drainage so the soil doesn’t stay too wet.terrarium3

We then put a thin layer of charcoal.  This was recommended in a video we watched about starting terrariums to help keep the soil fresh.terrarium4

We then put in a layer of soil.  We used a mix of two different potting soils (one seemed too fluffy and one was too heavy, so we mixed them).  These three layers made up the lower 1/3 of the jar.terrarium2

Then it was time for the plants.  Kaia chose a creeping fig, blue star creeper, and two little ferns.  She picked off any dead material and spaced the plants out  in the jar.  The largest plant went in first.terrarium5

Once the plants were tucked in, we filled in any gaps with more soil.

terrarium6 She added about two ounces of water.  We’ll add more if needed.  Better to add too little than too much.  You can always add more, but it’s not easy to take out extra.terrarium7

Then, put the top on…terrarium8

And admire your work!

terrarium9We are excited to see how this grows!


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