How To Make Your Own Beautiful Glass Terrarium

This DIY glass terrarium makes the perfect gift or great decor for your home or office.

June 29, 2017
Gina Tomaine

If you buy a terrarium ready-made at a garden store, it can be pricey. But if you make one yourself out of a rounded vase or fishbowl (you can even use an old glass coffee pot) you already have, you can save a mint and still have a beautiful, green tabletop feature for your home or office. (Not to mention the smug satisfaction of having created something so pretty yourself.)

(Whether you're starting your first garden or switching to organic, Rodale’s Basic Organic Gardening has all the answers and advice you need—get your copy today.)


A terrarium is any glass globe with plants growing, so you can be as creative as you like. These miniature worlds are low-maintenance and surprisingly calming to look at, plus it's been proven that nature is good for you (even on a small scale!) Here's how to make one of your own:

Related: 4 Cute Succulent Planters You Can Make In A Snap

To make your own terrarium, first get a round glass vessel, like a fish bowl, a vase, or a glass coffee pot that you're not using anymore. Cover the bottom of the bowl with 1-2 inches of pea gravel stones (you can get these from your local garden center or on Next, add a several inch layer of organic potting soil for your plants to grow in. Once you add the soil, add your plants. You'll want to select small plants that tolerate humidity and low, indirect light. 

Suggested plants
Nerve Plant (Fittonia verschaffeltii var. argyroneura)
Variegated Spider Fern (Arachnoides simplicior 'Variegata')
Golden Clubmoss (Selaginella kraussiana 'Aurea' )
Aquamarine Baby's Tears (Pilea glauca)
Bird's Nest Fern (Asplenium nidus)

Related: 3 Ways To Build An Epic Vertical Garden Anywhere

After you've nestled your plants' roots into the soil, you can add some small twigs, rocks, or mini-pinecones that you buy or forage. These help set the landscape and allow you to personalize your miniature woodland world. You can also get creative and add other small objects (think crystals or pretty stones) you have to create a scene you like. Then, edge the container with moss, which you can buy at a garden store or on, or forage outside. 


Related: How To Grow Succulents

Your finished terrarium adds a refreshing splash of nature to your home or office and makes a great housewarming gift. It's simple to care for: just keep the terrarium in in-direct light and water once a week with a small watering can or plant mister.

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