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What do I need to build a terrarium?

If you're thinking about building a terrarium, there are a few things you'll need to gather first. In this blog post, we'll outline everything you need in order to build a terrarium, including the materials, tools and plants.

Building Your Own Terrarium

If you’re thinking about building a terrarium, there are a few things you’ll need to gather first. In this blog post, we’ll outline everything you need in order to build a terrarium, including the materials, tools and plants.

Here is what you will generally need to build your own terrarium:

  • Terrarium (glass or plastic)
  • Gravel / Filtration media
  • Activated carbon
  • Potting soil
  • Decorative rocks
  • Plants
  • Terrarium tools

Now let’s take a more detailed look.

Finding Terrarium Containers

The terrarium itself can be made of glass or plastic. If you choose glass, it’s important to make sure it’s tempered so that it doesn’t shatter easily. Plastic terrariums are lighter and won’t break as easily, but they don’t offer the same level of visibility.

There are a huge variety of terrarium containers available online. Amazon and Etsy are great places to start your search.

Getting the Right Terrarium Tools

Putting together a terrarium can be a finicky process. Make sure you have the following tools or similar on hand to make things go more smoothly.

  • A spoon for scooping dirt and rocks
  • A measuring cup for adding water
  • A small funnel or tongs for adding plants

You can find a variety of terrarium tool kits online through Amazon and Etsy as well as local and online terrarium retailers and gardening stores.

Finding the Right Filtration Media

Filtration media is important for terrariums because it helps to keep the air inside clean and fresh. There are a few different types of media that can be used, including gravel, activated carbon, and potting soil.

Gravel is a good option because it’s easy to find and relatively inexpensive. Activated carbon is another popular choice because it can help to purify water and remove toxins from the air. Potting soil is also a good option, but it’s important to make sure that it’s sterile before using it in a terrarium.

Terrariums need a drainage layer at the bottom to help keep the plants healthy. This layer can be made from gravel or similar.

Using the Right Growing Medium

The type of growing medium you use will depend on the plants you’re growing. Some terrarium plants do well in potting soil, while others prefer a gravel or sand medium.

Check out these links on Etsy for some terrarium filtration and growing medium options.

Adding Plants to Your Terrarium

When choosing plants for your terrarium, it’s important to pick ones that will do well in the environment you have created.

If you’re not sure which plants will work, ask for help at your local nursery or visit our Terrarium Plant Library.

You can purchase terrarium plants online as well. Etsy and Amazon are excellent places to look for interesting terrarium plants, as well as terrarium kits and other terrarium building materials.

Once you’ve chosen your plants, it’s time to add them to the terrarium. Begin by adding a layer of growing medium to the bottom of the terrarium.

If you have what you need and are ready to get started, read our guide to putting together a terrarium here or check out our quick guide video below for terrarium care:

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