Monday, January 23, 2012

a tropical getaway on your tabletop.

 Me: "It's so cold and misty today!"

Husband: "It's January."

Me: "Oh, right."

We've had a unseasonably mild winter thus far in NC with many a day where my coat can be left in the closet. We'll have a day or two of a cold snap, then the temperature will quickly rebound and hit the highs of the weather roller coaster. Despite the lack of winter bundling and frozen stuff, it's still easy to get caught up with wintertime blues. Little "happy projects" help keep my spirits up. The act of creating something out of a random assortment of supplies really leads to a sense of accomplishment, and can add a little pep in your step! My latest creation? A terrarium. A tiny tropical rain forest to sit atop a table.

Here's what you'll need:

  • A glass container of any size. I used an apothecary jar I've had sitting around the house.
  • Rocks, pebbles, etc. This aids in drainage. You can hunt them out if you have a rocky driveway or purchase a bag at Lowes for about $4
  • Charcoal. You can find this at a garden center or pet store. We happened to have some "competition" charcoal sans all the chemicals of your grocery store version so I crushed and used that.
  • Plants. I picked up one house plant at an estate sale this weekend and bought one at Lowes. Be sure you choose a plant that works with the placement of your terrarium in terms of lighting. I went for low light versions.
  • Moss. You can forage this if you live in a mossy climate, or can always turn to the great interwebs.
  • Spoon or other digging device & a spray bottle for watering
 1. Place a layer of rocks in the bottom of your container.

 2. Sprinkle a layer of charcoal on top of your rocks. This is messy. You don't need a lot, just cover about 1/2". This helps prevent stagnation and filters the water.
 3. Add 2" - 3" of potting soil. 

 4. Now the fun part, add the plants!

 5. After the plants went in I decided I really wanted some moss. Pete and I went foraging and found a nice little patch to scoop up. Pat the moss into the soil, then water all of your new plantings.
 The finished product! I added a little critter I had around the house. I think I'll keep an eye out for a tiny gnome to add to the party. Keep an eye on it and make sure it stays damp, water a couple times a week or so. Then you are all set to enjoy a tropical oasis on your tabletop!


At least I'm skinny said...

I think you have convinced me that I neeeeeeeeeed a terrarium.

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