Friday, December 5, 2008

Thinking green(ery)

I'm a fan of plants, always have been. Growing up, my mom had a plant in every room, and then several in both the kitchen and living room. It was my job to water them, and it was actually time consuming to do.

Now that I am in my own home, I've started slowly emassing a small collection of house plants, but truthfully, I've only ever paid for one myself.

I have however, always wanted to do a terrarium, or mini-greenhouse thing. But never got around to it. This little feature over at Domino got me thinking about how easy it would be, if I just actually did it.

Here's a how-to on growing your own indoor plants, herbs, whatevers:

~clear glass containers with large openings to allow for easy access (bell jars covers are commonly used)

~assorted small plants

~potting soil

~ charcoal



~newspapers or dropcloth

~dry sheet moss (optional)


1. Gather up all your assorted plants. The best plants for this are ferns, succulents, cacti and tropicals.

2. Lay down newspaper or drop cloth, to protect your work area from getting dirty.

3. Create proper drainage in your glass container. This is essential in a terrarium as they are very humid. Add a solid layer of gravel to the bottom of your container (this keeps the roots from sitting in water) Next, add a 1/4" layer of charcoal, then a layer of potting soil that should reach less than half the container's height.

4. Prepare your plants for transplant. Holding the soil, wiggle the pot off. Carefully remove the remaining soil from the plant, and separate the roots.

5. Use the pencil to create a small hole for the plant, in the potting soil. Insert the plant, and gently cover the area with surrounding soil to ensure it is securely in place. Do not crowd your plants, they need room to grow!

6. Pretty it up! If you're using a bell jar-style terrarium, you can pot your plant in a plastic take out container, and then cover it in moss, so that it looks pretty.

7. Take care. If your terrarium is enclosed, then it only needs a light misting every 6 weeks - even less if it has any cacti inside. For ones with lids - remove the lid for one day a month for proper air circulation. As with any plants, remove dead leaves and prune back, if needed to keep your plants healthy!!

**All instructions and photos from Domino>

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