1. Pick a container
First comes the selection of your container. There are a few things to consider, mainly the size & shape. Think about the plants you plan on using. For a closed terrarium it is important that the terrarium is completely closed, this way no moisture can escape.
2. Create a false bottom
To make sure the roots of your plants won’t be sitting in the water we will start out by creating a false bottom (drainage layer) with the clay balls. Shoot for 2cm. We do this to mimic the ecosystem outside. The water collects at the bottom, where it will evaporate. It will then condensate on the glass and after a while fall down again acting like rain, then the cycle repeats itself.
3. Create a filter layer
Next comes a layer of sphagnum moss, be sure to soak the sphagnum moss in water. We would recommend using distilled water or letting your water sit for 24 hours to let chlorine evaporate. The sphagnum acts as a barrier for the substrate (soil). It will prevent the soil from falling into the drainage layer. Make sure to spread it evenly.
After that we will add the activated carbon, this acts as a natural filtration system. The carbon absorbs any chemicals, mold and other nasty stuff. Each time the water completes a cycle it will pass through the carbon twice!
4. The substrate layer
Now we will add the substrate mix. We like to add more substrate to the back to make it higher, this creates a sense of depth and will make the terrarium look larger when viewed from the front.
5. Planting your terrarium
Now the real magic happens! It is time to put in plants & decorations. You can use tropical plants, moss, rocks or anything you think will look good. Again, try to put larger plants and decorations in the back, and smaller ones in the front. It will really help with the sense of depth and make it stand out. Let your creativity run wild! To properly place your plants, make a little hole with your finger for the roots.
6. Caring for your terrarium
Caring for a closed terrarium is a total breeze, if you have springtails, add them now and don’t open it ever again! If you don’t, please allow the terrarium to air out every week by opening the lid for 15 minutes for the first month, after that you can leave it be! If the water level has dropped fill it back up, be careful not to overfill it. Place it in bright indirect sunlight. That’s it!
Once you are done, share your creation with us! We love to see what you made. Tag us on Instagram @Sybotanica and we will repost it in our story. If you have any questions about terrariums or plants reach out to us at firstname.lastname@example.org or via the green "?".