This weekend I was excited to go to a fall terrarium workshop offered by the Mansfield Parks & Recreation department. Amy Conley from Zoe’s Plant Shop was the instructor. You can catch her on Instagram or Facebook.
I was delighted to discover how quick and easy it is to make this fun, living home decor accent. We were finished in less than half an hour.
Supplies – What You’ll Need
- Clear vase. We used an 8-inch round glass one, but you can use any kind of clear vessel.
- 3 or 4 succulents. These can be ones with roots or cuttings that have had time to dry/scab over. If the end of a cutting hasn’t dried (usually they need a few days of drying time), the plant will take on too much water.
- Drainage material – rocks or sand. It won’t be seen since it goes at the bottom, so don’t worry if you don’t like the look of what you’ve found. And you only need to enough to cover the bottom of vase.
- Cactus potting mix, which is a fast-draining soil needed for succulents. You can buy this premade or make your own by using 50% regular potting soil and 50% perlite.
- Moss. You can use live moss or artificial; we used artificial.
- Fun decorations. Since it’s fall, Amy brought fall leaves, various small decorative gourds, pinecones, and glittery spiders. But you can use whatever small items you’d like and even swap them out as the seasons change.
- Workspace that can get dirt
- Pencil/pen to help you place the moss where you’d like it to go.
1. Cover the bottom of your vase with the drainage material, which in our case are the rocks.
2. Fill the vase with the quick-draining soil to about the halfway mark.
3. Place the succulents in the dirt and gently cover the roots. You can put all your plants in the middle of the vase, or put them all to one side. There is no wrong way to arrange them. If you’re looking for some design tips, don’t forget that items can be partially submerged in the soil or off-kilter. You can also scour the web for some inspiration or designs to mimic.
4. Place the decorative accents in their desired places. Arrange and re-arrange to your heart’s content.
5. Fill in the holes with the moss.
6. Water in the succulents well so they begin to take root in their new home.
7. Place near a south-facing window so that it can get indirect sunlight.
Care for Your Terrarium
As mentioned above, you should place the terrarium in a room or near a window that gets plenty of sun. Succulents thrive with 12+ hours of sunlight daily.
After the initial watering, the best way to determine if moisture is needed is to see if the soil is dry. If the soil is still wet, don’t do anything. If the soil is dry, water the plants. Check your terrarium once or twice a week. Try not to water too frequently or drop too much rain in in one go, because succulents don’t like to have their roots sitting in water.
If the plants get too large for your terrarium, just cut off any sprouts and create a new terrarium.
Photos by Lindsey Perkins Wade.