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Craft Your Own Succulent Terrarium: Step-by-Step Guide

Craft Your Own Succulent Terrarium: Step-by-Step Guide

Part 1: The Joy of Succulent Terrariums

Succulent terrariums are mini enchanted gardens you can create in the comfort of your own home. They can transform any space into a green oasis, adding beauty and tranquility. They’re perfect for city dwellers, busy individuals, and plant lovers with limited outdoor space.

So, what exactly is a succulent terrarium, and why should you consider creating one?

Part 2: Understanding Succulents and Terrariums

What Are Succulents?

Succulents are a group of plants known for their water-storing abilities. They thrive in arid environments and can withstand periods of drought. This makes them perfect for a terrarium environment, as they require minimal watering and care.

What is a Succulent Terrarium?

Imagine a small, self-contained ecosystem made up of succulents, which are a unique mix of small, hardy plants known for their ability to store water. A succulent terrarium is a small garden that is kept in a glass container. 

You can see the plants and animals inside and use it as an interesting piece of home decor.

A terrarium is a clear container with a lid that is used to grow and show off plants. It is a small ecosystem that can take care of itself. The plants exhale water, which condenses on the walls of the container and trickles back into the soil, just like the water cycle in nature.

Types of Succulents for Your Terrarium

Not all succulents are created equal. Some, like Echeveria and Haworthia, are ideal for terrariums due to their size, growth pattern, and resilience. Others may need to fare better in a terrarium environment. Picking the appropriate succulents is crucial to the success of your terrarium.

Why Craft Your Own Succulent Terrarium?

Creating a succulent terrarium is like painting a picture. It allows you to express your creativity and design a living piece of art. Plus, it’s an engaging, hands-on project that’s surprisingly therapeutic.

Why buy a pre-made terrarium when you can craft a personalized one?

The Joy of Personal Creativity

There’s a unique joy derived from creating something with your own hands, a sense of satisfaction that’s hard to replicate. Making a succulent terrarium allows you to harness your creativity, combining various succulent species, decorative elements, and containers to form a living piece of art.

Mindfulness and Stress Relief

Engaging in hands-on activities like crafting a terrarium can serve as a mindfulness exercise, allowing you to focus on the task at hand and momentarily escape daily stressors. The simple act of arranging the plants and tending to them can be therapeutic and relaxing.

A Long-lasting, Low-maintenance Indoor Garden

Succulents are resilient and low-maintenance plants, making them perfect for indoor terrariums. Once your terrarium is set up, it requires minimal upkeep. It’s a sustainable way of bringing nature into your home without needing a backyard or frequent attention.

Crafting your very own succulent terrarium can be a wonderful and rewarding endeavor. There’s something quite magical about creating a mini-world of vibrant succulents within a glass container, your very own little oasis.

This article is a comprehensive step-by-step guide to help you make your unique succulent terrarium. Let’s embark on this delightful journey together.

Part 3: Gathering Your Materials

Before starting this crafty journey, let’s gather the materials. Like a chef preparing a recipe, having all your materials at hand can make the process smoother.

Choosing the Right Container

The first step in crafting your succulent terrarium is choosing the correct container. Ideally, it should be transparent and have an open large enough to place your plants. Jars, vases, and even fish tanks can make excellent terrarium containers.

Your choice of container can set the tone for your terrarium. Almost any glass container will work, but ones with a wide opening are the easiest.

Essential Supplies for Your Terrarium

Selecting Your Succulents

Next, let’s talk about succulents. These charming plants come in various shapes, sizes, and colors. Choose succulents that appeal to you and will fit nicely in your container.

Necessary Accessories

Other necessary items include potting soil, pebbles for drainage, activated charcoal to prevent mold, and decorative elements like moss, rocks, or miniature figurines.

In addition to the container and succulents, you will need a few more supplies to create your terrarium:

  • Potting soil (preferably cactus or succulent mix)
  • Pebbles or small rocks for drainage
  • Activated charcoal (to keep the soil fresh)
  • Decorative elements like moss, shells, or figurines

Part 4: Craft Your Own Succulent Terrarium: Step-By-Step Guide

Step 1: Preparing the Container

First, clean your container thoroughly. Any dust or residue could interfere with the clarity of your terrarium.

Step 2: Layer the Drainage Materials

Begin by adding a layer of pebbles or small rocks to the bottom of your container. This layer will help improve drainage, preventing water from sitting at the root level, which could cause root rot.

Step 3: Add a Layer of Activated Charcoal

Sprinkle a layer of activated charcoal over the pebbles. This will keep the water clean and prevent mold and bacterial growth, keeping your terrarium fresh and healthy.

Step 4: Add the Potting Soil

Next, add your potting soil. You want a thick layer for your succulents’ roots to grow comfortably, generally a couple of inches deep.

Step 5: Arrange Your Succulents

Now comes the fun part – arranging your succulents! This is your chance to get creative. Arrange them in a way that appeals to you. Remember to leave some space for the plants to grow.

Carefully remove succulents from their pots, brush off excess soil, and arrange them in your container. Have fun with this part; there’s no wrong way to design your terrarium!

Step 6: Add Decorative Elements

Lastly, add your decorative elements. This could be moss, shells, rocks, or little figurines. Just be careful not to overcrowd the terrarium, as your succulents still need room to grow.

Part 5: Terrarium Care and Maintenance

Taking care of your succulent terrarium is just as important as creating it. Here are a few tips to keep your terrarium thriving.

Watering Your Terrarium

Succulents are drought-tolerant plants, meaning they don’t need much water. Overwatering is one of the most common causes of succulent death. A general rule of thumb is to water your terrarium sparingly, only when the soil is arid.

Light and Temperature

Your succulent terrarium will need plenty of indirect light. Avoid placing it in direct sunlight, as the glass can amplify the heat, potentially scorching your plants. The ideal temperature for most succulents is between 60-80°F (15-27°C).

Succulents love bright, indirect light. They also prefer cooler temperatures at night, mimicking their natural desert environment.

Pruning and Grooming

To keep your terrarium looking its best, do a little pruning and grooming occasionally. Remove dead leaves, trim overgrown plants, and ensure all plants are healthy.


 No, not all succulents are ideal for terrariums. Select varieties that prefer indirect light and can tolerate humid conditions.

Watering should be minimal—only when the soil is completely dry.

 Yes, but working with containers with wide openings is easier.

Place your terrarium in a spot with bright, indirect light.

Yes, but ensure they have similar light and water requirements as your succulents.

Not all succulents are suitable for terrariums. Some, like Echeveria and Haworthia, are better suited due to their size and growth patterns. Always research your chosen succulents to ensure they'll thrive in a terrarium environment.

Generally, water your terrarium sparingly, only when the soil is arid. Overwatering is a common mistake that can lead to root rot and succulent death.

No, avoid placing your terrarium in direct sunlight. The glass can amplify the heat and potentially scorch your plants. Instead, choose a location with bright, indirect light.

The correct container for your terrarium should be transparent and have an open large enough to place your plants. The container size will depend on how many plants you want to include.

Succulents in terrariums typically don't require regular fertilizing. If you fertilize, do so sparingly and during the growing season (usually spring and summer).

While some terrariums can be sealed, it's not recommended for succulent terrariums. Succulents need air circulation to thrive, and a sealed environment can lead to excess humidity and potential plant issues.


Crafting your own succulent terrarium can be a creative and rewarding endeavor. With the right tools, some beautiful succulents, and a touch of creativity, you can create a stunning indoor garden that requires minimal care. Embark on this green-thumb journey and experience the joy of creating your very own mini oasis.

Crafting your succulent terrarium is a fun, creative activity resulting in a beautiful, low-maintenance piece of living art. By following these steps, you can create a thriving mini ecosystem that adds a green touch to your space. Happy planting!

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