Buy or DIY: Trendy Terrariums

The terrarium trend seems to be going strong with no signs of slowing any time soon. On a recent trip to my local West Elm the entire front entrance of the store was devoted to a terrarium display — and they're not the only major retailer embracing the trend. After the jump we'll provide you with the instructions and the resources for buying and creating your own terrarium.

BUY:
• The simple Moss Terrarium Bottle from Uncommon Goods comes prepackaged with everything you need: the vessel, moss, soil and other supplies.
Anthropologie has made two products in one with their Terrarium Pendant Lamp.
West Elm offers a number of terrarium vessels, from large fish bowls to smaller hanging glass bubbles.
• The glass jars with lids from Crate & Barrel would be the perfect affordable vessel for a terrarium.
• These recycled glass terrariums from Sprout Home are handblown and come in four different sizes.

• Also from Sprout Home, this terrarium is made from recycled electric meters, lending an industrial edge to this very natural project.
• The lantern inspired Zinc Terrarium from Frontgate has a more structural appearance thanks to its frame and base.
• This Mini-Garden Terrarium from Viva Terra has a door that swings open wide, allowing easy access for planting and maintaining.
• If you want the look but not the work, Costa Farms sells this Canister Terrarium kit at Lowes.
• This wall mount fish bowl from Target could become a terrarium in a home that lacks table space or has a nosy pet.

On a recent visit to Costa Farms in Miami, I had the opportunity to roll up my sleeves and build my own terrarium. And you know what? It was totally fun! Whereas planting houseplants can seem daunting and messy, a terrarium is more like decorating. It's mostly a matter of layering the soil, rocks and moss (appealing to the designer in all of us) and then plopping in your plants. Once planted, the terrarium is mostly carefree.

DIY:
The great folks at Costa provided me with the following instructions for DIYing a terrarium. Having assembled a terrarium myself, it's actually quite fun and not very messy. When you're looking for plants to fill your terrarium, try small succulents, ferns or air plants.

Materials:
• Select a glass container with a top. Container should be 4 times as high as it is wide.
• Pebbles (about a 1/3 of the planting area)
• Sand (just enough to cover the pebbles)
• Charcoal (thin layer covering the sand)
• Potting soil (slightly less than 2/3 of the planting area)
• Assortment of small house plants
• Ground cover (small pebbles or moss)

Directions:
1. Planting area should be about ¼ of the height of the container.
2. Layer container with materials 2-5 in that order.
3. Plant plants, the tallest in the center.
4. Water the container.
5. Cover the soil with pebbles or moss.
6. Seal terrarium with cover.

MAKE IT LAST:
Whether you're building your own terrarium or buying one pre-assembled, the folks at Costa also provided some very practical tips for caring for it.
• Never place a terrarium in direct sunlight.
• Do not over water your terrarium. If heavy condensation develops on the glass, uncover the terrarium for a while and wipe down the glass.
• If plants need more watering they will start to droop, this is your key to water your terrarium.

Images: 1. West Elm; All others as credited above.

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