Terrarium Creations

Terrarium ideas, plant library, info and more.

Love terrariums? | Made for Terrarium Enthusiasts

The Best Drainage Layer Materials for Terrariums

Find the right drainage layer materials for your terrarium with some of the best options.

Find the right drainage layer materials for your terrarium.

One of the most important aspects of creating a successful terrarium is choosing the right drainage layer material. The drainage layer is responsible for allowing excess water to drain away from plant roots, preventing them from becoming waterlogged and susceptible to disease.

There are a variety of materials that can be used for the drainage layer, but not all of them are equally effective.

Here is a look at some of the best drainage layer materials for terrariums.

Infographic for Best Drainage Layer Materials for Terrariums

Gravel: Gravel is a popular choice for the drainage layer because it is inexpensive and easy to find. It is also effective at draining excess water away from plant roots. However, gravel can be difficult to clean if it becomes clogged with debris, and it can be sharp so scratches glass easily. You can find a variety of options for terrarium gravel on Etsy or Amazon.

Perlite: Perlite is a lightweight, volcanic rock that is often used in horticulture. It is an excellent drainage material because it is full of tiny pores that allow water to drain away quickly. Perlite is also very easy to work with and is not sharp like gravel. There are lots of different options available including premade soil and perlite mixes on Etsy or Amazon.

Vermiculite: Vermiculite is another volcanic rock that is often used in horticulture. It is similar to perlite in that it is full of tiny pores that allow water to drain away quickly. However, vermiculite is much more absorbent than perlite, making it ideal for situations where you need to water your plants less often. Also available on Etsy or Amazon and in a variety of mixes.

Coconut Coir / Coconut Peat: Coconut coir is a byproduct of the coconut industry and is an excellent drainage material. It is environmentally friendly, easy to work with, and does an excellent job of draining excess water away from plant roots. Lots of options on Amazon and Etsy.

Sphagnum Moss: Sphagnum moss is a type of moss that is commonly used in horticulture. It has excellent drainage properties and can hold large amounts of water, making it ideal for plants that require frequent watering. You can find Sphagnum moss on Etsy and Amazon.

Stones and Pebbles: Stones and pebbles can be used as a drainage layer material, but they are not as effective as some of the other options on this list. They are difficult to work with and can be sharp, making them difficult to handle. In addition, stones and pebbles can be difficult to clean if they become clogged with debris. Stones and pebbles can be sourced in small and large quantities on Amazon or Etsy.

A combination of the above: A lot of people like to use a combination of the above materials for their drainage layer. This is because each material has its own unique benefits and drawbacks. By using a combination of materials, you can take advantage of the best features of each one.

No matter which type of drainage material you choose for your terrarium, be sure to use a layer that is at least 2-3 inches deep to ensure adequate drainage. Also, make sure to clean the drainage material regularly to prevent it from becoming clogged with debris. If you aren’t sure where to start, why not try searching through Etsy to see what’s available – start here!

Looking for more information on terrariums? Check out:

You might also like..
Learn about the essential materials you need to build your own terrarium and start creating beautiful plantscapes and terrariums!
Creating a disney themed terrarium with disney mini figures is an exciting and creative way to bring the magic of Disney into your home.
7 most popular types of terrarium plants so you can find a terrarium plant that's perfect for your new terrarium.

Love terrariums?

Join the TC community!

Sign up for updates and information about terrariums, terrarium design ideas, inspiration, deals and more.

We'll send you the occasional email update.