If you are looking for a nice decorative piece for the living area or any room in the house, consider putting up a terrarium. For the uninitiated, a terrarium is like an aquarium, but instead of filling it up with water and fish, it is partially filled with plants and soil at the base to create a miniature forest with its own atmosphere. For this article, we will introduce a little twist into it by using succulent plants instead of the usual ferns and moss.

Choosing the Succulents for Terrarium

To successfully make a terrarium, you must first determine the kind of plants that you want to put. In this case, we will be using succulents. Just see to it that they belong to the same family or at least have the same environmental requirements and hardiness so they can all survive. The ideal succulents for this are the mini rosettes and cacti.

Make sure that the succulents are already rooted. Be extra careful also when transferring them in the container so as not to wound or damage them.

Selecting a Container

Unlike moss and ferns that thrive in a closed container, succulents prefer lots of air to keep their internal and external temperatures in check as well as have breathable air. With that, they should be placed in an open container. You can use an aquarium or even a jar depending on the scale of your project.

Ensure that the chosen container has been cleaned well to avoid contaminating the plant and soil with bacteria, fungi, and other harmful organisms. Let it dry properly too if you have washed it prior.

Picking the Right Soil

Use loose sterilized garden topsoil mixed with some layers of pebbles or pea gravel at the base. Arrange them similarly to what you would usually do in a standard garden. You may also include an activated charcoal lining in between them to help filter the water and prevent the growth of fungi in the container.


Succulents do not require much water, and too much watering may lead to rotting in their roots. Therefore, only water your plants when their leaves start showing signs of drying out or wrinkling. Some droplets on the leaves will do.

Decorating Tips

You can use succulents with different colors and shapes for variety like the Moon Cactus, Echeveria Blue Atoll, and Kiwi Aeonium along with the usual ones like Aloe Vera. In addition, you can paint the pebbles or put decorative stickers and wallpaper backgrounds on the aquarium for extra appeal.

Make It a Fun Activity

One way to make the process of making your succulent plants terrarium more enjoyable is by involving your kids in the project. This is a good way to introduce them to basic gardening without making it such a chore for them since succulents do not require much effort to maintain. Moreover, the activity will expose your kids to the wonders of nature, which will let them appreciate and care for their environment more.

About the author
Giancarlo Perlas
A freelance writer who loves cars, sports, carpentry, and gardening. Check him out on Twitter at @giancarloperlas and Pinterest at Succulent Shaman.

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