August 18, 2014

Terrariums are NOW!

The 1970's are calling and they want their terrariums back! Actually, they're the coolest and EASIEST way to add some greenery to your home - and make you feel like a master gardener all at the same time!

The amazing, Tovah Martin, whom I had the great good fortune to meet, wrote this great book, entitled (wait for it) Terrarium!

She has a wealth of info inside the pages and shows some fun examples of terrariums to try at home; some as simple as an air plant plopped elegantly in a martini glass.

For a dinner I was hosting, I decided that it would be fun to have terrariums at each table and then the lucky guests could leave with one. So, off I set to gather all my materials:

apothecary jars: I found some cheap ones at Michael's great craft store and if you wait long enough, you can use a coupon since they have them all the time)



potting soil

moss: in this case I used sheet moss, but you can also use reindeer moss which is rounder and a brighter, chartreusey green

plants: (I wish I could have found some miniature ones, but instead I just grabbed what I could find, like herbs and African violets, begonias, small-leafed coleus, and baby ferns

clippers: the one's here are Joyce Chen, which you can find in garden or cooking stores since the tips work well for snipping. Watch out though, because I've sliced many a finger tip with these buggers! 


tip: Stonewall Kitchen and Terrain sell many tools, accessories and even plants for terrariums so knock yourself out! (I didn't here due to budget and time - story of my life...sigh)

Start with a clean apothecary jar. Don't forget your "Goo Gone" if you don't want to see the price label stuck on the glass. Because once your terrarium is filled, it'll be hard to scrape it off.

Charcoal is used to help filter the water and keep mold and other goodies from forming

Pebbles are great for drainage and when combined with charcoal, the mixture provides the perfect base for the potting soil

Mix one part charcoal with one part pebbles in a good amount to cover the bottom of your container (I'm so scientific, aren't I)

Then put at least a couple of inches of good potting soil over the base, and at least enough to cover the roots of the plants you're using

I LOVE Martha Stewart (note: topic of a future post :)), but as you can see, I'm not her. I'm messy and proud of it. It doesn't matter what things look like while you're making it. All that matters is the end product.

Take your plants out of their pots and break up the roots a little so they'll be more likely to root in their new home - your lovely terrarium. Snip off parts that are too tall and won't fit once your lid is on. You can even break up the main plant into many smaller ones for multiple terrariums

Here, I started with a pretty begonia that I was able to break up into a few separate plants

Then I planted the begonia along with some rosemary and oregano - a very fragrant combo!

Drink up little terrarium :) 

Tada! Here are a bunch of terrariums ready for my dinner

And the final installation at my club. Try to vary the heights of the jars on the tables to make it look more interesting. Then figure out some fun contest for your guests so they can win one and bring it home. Let's start a terrarium revolution!

(I hate those brown chairs btw - I wish my club got pretty much anything else!)

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