Terrarium Plant Care
At our terrarium workshops we create succulent terrariums, where you learn how to create an ecosystem. A terrarium is a great introduction into plant care as terrariums are low maintenance and easy to care for. The succulent in your terrarium can survive with little water and indirect light. To keep your new terrarium glass garden happy and healthy there are a few things to keep in mind.
When to water?
Water your succulent terrarium only when the soil has gone completely dry. This is usually a month after you first build your terrarium. Use a water bottle that has a release mechanism. Succulents are highly susceptible to root-rot. Overwatering is the number one reason a succulent will die. Ensure the plant has dried out before watering, this helps determine how many days it takes for your terrarium to dry out in your home or office. When in doubt, don't water.
Water the roots of each plant, making sure to lightly spritz the soil around that plant. Remember, there is are no holes at the bottom of the terrarium for the water to get air from, therefore the lightest possible amount of water is best, otherwise you may begin to see the succulent root brown. If you see the bottom leaves shrivel up, remove them with a pair of eyebrow pliers. Succulents are desert plants and like to totally dry between waterings. Succulents like to have their soil moistened but never the root so saturated it can't dry itself out again. Set a watering schedule for your terrarium and stick to it. Terrariums thrive on a regular and appropriate watering plan.
How do I know if I have over watered my terrarium?
The root of your succulent may look like it's darkening lower on the succulent's base stem. This is from too much water held in the root. If you have a sealed terrarium, condensation may build up. This signals excess water in the succulent. Open the lid until the condensation disappears. If you have an open terrarium, wipe the glass with a paper towel. Mold is another signal that you are over-watering your terrarium. Carefully clean the mold off the leaves and soil, removing the mold from the terrarium. Move your terrarium to a brighter space in your home and refrain from watering the terrarium until the soil fully dries out.
What should I water my terrarium with?
The best tool to use is our watering bottles. We do not recommend using a spray bottle. Water around the roots, giving your succulent's roots a spurt of water. The succulent leaves are allowed to get wet, but do not rely on this method of watering for a full watering. Focus your watering on each plant's roots, after weeks of no water. Make sure not to flood or over-saturate the terrain roots, as this may darken the lower succulent stem.
Where should I place my terrarium in my home?
Place your succulent and cacti terrarium in a bright nook of your home. You'll want it to be bright but not a spot where your terrarium would get too hot. Keep in mind that glass tends to magnify direct sun and can potentially burn your plants, If your terrarium feels hot, re-locate it. A lot of natural sunlight is the area you want to place your terrarium, it needs light to stay dry. Do not place your terrarium near or on a radiator or air conditioner, nor near a door or window with a cool draft. Finding the correct placement for your terrarium is key to it's success.
How much light should my terrarium receive a day?
Terrariums need at least 5-6 hours of direct sunlight. Think of their natural desert environment. Place your terrarium where it can receive some direct light where the rays sun shines some daylight on the leaves of the plant. Generally, anywhere sun naturally lights up a room. Unobstructed southern and western exposures are the most constant and warmest sources of direct light.
What to do when your succulent looks yellow?
If you notice the leaves are turning yellow at the bottom of the succulent this means they have received too much water. It’s okay to pluck these away, they'll regenerate shrink away or can be propagated into new pups. If this has happened to your terrarium, refrain from watering the terrarium until the soil dries, let your succulent completely dry out before watering again.
If your succulents leaves look like they're turning brown and crunchy this means that the succulents in your terrarium is under-watered. If the leaves look completely dead, carefully remove the leaves from the plant with pruning scissors or eyebrow tweezers. This won't harm the succulent as in this case, the leaves are crunchy and brown. Be sure to peak in at the base and if the full stem is dark the succulent may have died off.