How to make your mama her own terrarium in 7 easy steps

    It’s time for round two of Mother’s Day gift ideas! Don’t forget to stay tuned for new DIY projects for your mama every day until Sunday, May 10…that’s right…Mother’s Day.

    What you’ll need:

      • clear glass or plastic container (kitchen canister, jar, fishbowl or tank, etc., and lid), clean and dry
      • pea gravel or polished rocks
      • activated charcoal
      • sphagnum moss
      • small, slow-growing plants that tolerate low light and have similar water needs (be sure the plants are healthy and showing no signs of disease)
      • potting soil (fresh bag to make sure it’s sterile)
      • spoon, long-handled (if container has a small opening)


    (Note: the amounts of how much you need vary depending on the size of container you’re using)

    1. Fill the bottom with a layer of pebbles for drainage. Since there’s no hole at the bottom for water to filter through you need this layer to assist with draining and to stop your plant from drowning. You want somewhere between 1 cm and 5 cm depending on the size of your container (ours are quite small so we had only 1 cm)

    step 1











    2. Follow it up with a similar-sized layer of activated charcoal to help filter the air and water to keep it fresh. Since the container is enclosed, it runs the risk of getting a funky odor, but the charcoal prevents that.

    step 2










    3. Add a thin layer of sphagnum moss above the charcoal. Sphagnum moss is great for water retention, but really we’re using it to separate the dirt and the charcoal.

    step 3











    4. Next you need your potting soil. The amount once again depends on the size of your container and the number of plants you’re putting in. Generally you want at least the same amount of potting mix as the other 3 layers.

    step 4










    5. To add your plant, create a hole in the potting mix. Remove your plant from its container (if it has one) and gently loosen the roots. Place the plant into the hole and lightly press the soil around it. Repeat for any other plants you need to put in (do the biggest first as that will help you to see how much room you really have).

    step 5










    6. Add any decorative elements such as more pebbles, sphagnum moss or figurines.

    step 6










    7. Finally, mist your plant with a spray bottle filled with water until the soil is quite damp.

    BIG thanks to photographer Christopher Dugas for the images! Go check out and follow his Instagram @christopherdugas if you want more presents for your eyeballs.

    Screen Shot 2015-05-06 at 3.37.06 PM

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