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How to Make a Holiday Terrarium Ornament

Written by Mindy on November 30th, 2014

Looking for a unique gift for that gardener that has everything?  If the answer is yes then I have an easy project for you.  The supplies that you will need are simple and easily found.  You will first need a clear, glass ornament that has a removable top.  Next, you will need a few small stones, soil, a funnel, chopsticks or tweezers, and a small plant.  When I say a small plant, I mean one that will fit down through the hole of the ornament.  If you are stuck on this, consider using live moss, spider plant or air fern.  Also, you can add accessories such as little people or animals to the terrarium but this is optional.

Once you have your supplies together, the next step is to clean your ornament.  To do this, remove the cap and place the ornament in a sink of warm water that has a little dish soap in it.  Swish the water around the inside of the ornament and then rinse in a water that has been treated with one capful of bleach.  Next, tip the ornament upside down and allow to dry.

terrarium.ornamentAfter the ornament has completely dried, the next step is to build your terrarium.  This process starts with gently dropping a few stones into the ornament.  This will create the drainage layer of the terrarium.  Then, add soil to the ornament but do not try to just pour it through the hole.  Instead, use a funnel to guide your soil into the ornament.  How much soil should you use?  Well, that depends on the plant that you plan to use.  If you use an air fern or moss, you will need about one inch.  Spider plants, on the other hand, will require more soil.  The key to keep in mind is to make sure that the roots are covered.

One you have “planted” your terrarium ornament, the next step is to add any accessories you would like.  After your terrarium has been arranged as you would like, the next step is to water in your plant material.  Do not pour water into the ornament.  A better approach is to mist the soil until it appears moist.

As careful as one may be, you will still find soil and debris clinging to the inside of the glass.  To clean this up is simple and only requires cotton tipped swaps.  Once you have your swaps, dip them in a little water and use them as little glass cleaners.  Continue to clean until you are happy with the results.  Then, replace the metal cap and hang.

Care of your ornament is simple.  Monitor the soil moisture if you are using a true plant.  What do I mean by that, well an air plant really is not a plant but a sea organism that is painted green.  In doing so, the moisture of the soil is not important but to keep the air fern fresh mist with water every few weeks.

After the holidays, do not pack up your terrarium ornaments.  These little globes of life can be hung on a curtain rod or displayed on a windowsill and enjoyed year round.  But keep in mind though that just like any other terrarium, they should never be placed in direct sunlight.


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