Jewish Journal

DIY: Make a succulent terrarium for your indoor garden

by Julie Bien

July 14, 2014 | 2:44 pm

My trio of succulent terrariums!

Hello lovely readers! I'm back with my newest DIY post. Today, we're making terrariums. Why terrariums? Well...

As much as I love my new apartment, the biggest issue I have with it is that it lacks a balcony or patio--so there's no place for a real garden.

Because I love gardening (and just being around plants) I decided to try my hand at indoor gardening. I know succulents are pretty hard to kill, so they seemed like a good first plant. Who knows? If they survive more than a week, I might also get a philodendron! Or create an herb garden! THE POSSIBILITIES!!!

But back to the terrarium. Terrariums are great because 1) they're cheap and easy to make 2) they handle neglect relatively well and 3) they give you a little plant life and greenery in your otherwise plant-free living quarters.

So without further babbling...the instructions!


a succulent

a jar/clear glass container big enough for the succulent


potting soil

gravel (which you can just collect while walking around trails)

decorative dried moss (once again, can be collected in nature)

cactus/succulent fertilizer


1. Place gravel in bottom of container so it fills 1-2 inches. This is important for drainage because you don't want to drown your succulents!

2. Mix the potting soil and pumice together in a ratio of about 1:1. This creates a quick-draining soil (once again, don't want to drown the baby plants!)

3. Put the soil mixture about 4 inches deep into your container (on top of the gravel).

4. Make an indentation in the soil large enough for your succulents root system(which differs depending on the plant).

5. Gently place your plant into the indentation and make sure it's in there nice and snug (like a bug in a rug).

6. Add some decorative moss around the edges (mine was collected from the forest around Donner Pass--care for some soylent green? *ahem* Bad Donner Party joke).

7. Water gently (no need to soak it) and feed it with fertilizer.

8. Water/fertilize every two weeks or so through the summer and fall. Then you can cut back on the fertilizer.

9. Only water the succulent when the soil is completely dry.

10. While exposing it to natural daylight is good, be careful not to have the terrariums in direct sun all day long--otherwise you risk cooking your plants, and no one wants a cooked succulent!

11. Enjoy your indoor greenery!

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Hi. I’m Julie Bien.

I’m a writing, blogging, coffee-drinking machine.

I also have a thing for sustainability, organic gardening, cooking, and easy crafting. I’m like Martha...

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