Since 2010 Home Grown Fun has inspired people around the world to explore nature and have more fun in the garden.

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how-to-make hypertufa planters

How-To Make a Hypertufa Planter, Trough and Sculpture!

It is easy to create your own hypertufa pots, troughs and sculptures using these simple recipes and instructions. WHAT IS ...
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50 Homemade Fertilizers and Soil Amendments: eBOOK – EASY, ORGANIC Recipes for EDIBLE GARDENS

Gardeners around the globe want to know how to make organic fertilizer. Homemade fertilizers can be inexpensive and effective if ...
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ladybug facts for kids

Fun Facts About Ladybugs

"Hi, I'm actually a lady beetle, not a bug. I chew my food instead of sucking it up. When something ...
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How to Grow Potatoes in Recyled Coffee Sacks

The Great Tater Experiment I tried growing potatoes in my pants, in t-shirts, pillow cases, garbage bags and my husband's ...
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Homemade Fossils – MADE EASY!

It's easy to "mix up some mesozoic" at home or at school!  Making homemade fossils is fun and addictive. We've got ...
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homemade organic fertilizer

10 Natural Fertilizer Recipes

Go no further than your pantry, backyard or the beach for materials to make your own organic fertilizer: BANANA PEELS  ...
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Best Foods to Feed Red Wiggler Composting Worms

We've tried a bunch of foods in our bins at home and have a nice list for you to keep ...
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What does real gold look like?

HOW TO Tell the Difference Between Real Gold and Fool’s Gold

"There's gold in them there hills!" On a recent trip to Sutter's Mill in Coloma, CA, we got a chance ...
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Growing Cucumbers in Small Spaces

HOW TO Grow Cucumbers Over Other Plants to Save Space

How We Did It Selected varieties of cucumbers that we prefer eating. A no-brainer but try and pick the ones ...
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Compost Fair HOW TO

The Home Grown Fun Family put on a composting fair at an elementary school in Southern California. Check out how we ...
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You will love our latest project!

Over a year ago my daughter created this terrarium and only opened it once so far in the very beginning to add a tiny bit of water! We haven’t added any water since the week we created it in Oct 2017!

Terrarium Lasts For Years!

Any size jar will do. Imagine one of these 3 feet tall – where can I get a glass vessel that big?

This is an exciting project for all ages, especially when you’re stuck inside for an hour. It’s educational and fascinating. Learn about the water cycle and discover changes in your homemade ecosystem as time goes on. There’s little maintenance. Just pay attention to location. We have ours out of direct sunlight. If you see yours is dying due to lack of moisture, crack the top and add a few spoons of water. Once it starts to fog up and then clear up on its own, you’re on the right track and you can leave it. Stop yourself from opening the top! This was on the floor until today and it survived a move LOL.

Homemade terrariums featuring plants, rocks and soil give you instant satisfaction and long-lasting interest! Imagine a mysterious, misty land that develops its own personality and ecosystem over many years! Terrariums are educational, fascinating and one-of-a-kind. And they require little to no maintenance!

Is it easy to create an enclosed terrarium? Yes, all it takes is a container, rocks, screening, charcoal, soil and one or more plants.

How do you make a terrarium self-sufficient? We shared our tips below for making a terrarium last for a long time. Once you’re happy with how the terrarium is doing, you can leave it alone and never add water again. Here’s how we did it:

The Golden Rule of terrarium materials: Make sure your materials are clean and the plants you choose are disease free.

Supply List

  • Plastic or glass container – something you can easily see into and has a lid that seals well.
  • 1/4 cup to 10 cups small rocks – small for the bottom of the container and a few for show.
  • 1 -5 tablespoons of charcoal –  the kind you would add to a fish tank.
  • Screen mesh cut into a shape that will fit inside the bottom of your container – the kind you use to make a window screen.
  • Enough soil to fill the container 1-4 inches deep – new potting soil free of insects and debris.
  • 1-3 plants – plants that like moisture and tend to stay fairly small. No succulents (they will die in humid, closed conditions. If your container is small, use one plant. 
  • Embellishments: Rocks, sticks, etc.

Container Tips:
Make sure your container has a cover that keeps air out and moisture in. The water inside the container will evaporate, rise and seep through the soil and rocks non-stop. You do want to be able to open the top if necessary so do not plan to seal the container permanently.

Instructions

  1. BUILD THE BASE: Gather your materials and layer the bottom of the container with an inch or two of small rock, a tablespoon of charcoal and the screening material in that order. You can cut the screen to be slightly smaller than the circumference of the container so that the edges won’t show. 
  2. ADD THE SOIL: Thoroughly moisten the soil first in a bowl: VERY IMPORTANT! Add soil at a depth using the guide below. The goal is to ensure you have enough soil for the plant to thrive. Be generous, even if that means the soil takes up a bit more space in your container. 
Add rocks, charcoal, screen and soil. Then add plants and other fun stuff. 

Diameter of container = 1 inch > use 1-2 inch of soil

Diameter of the container = 2-3 inches > use 2-3 inches of soil

Diameter of the container = 4 – 12 inches > use 3-5 inches of soil

Diameter of the container = 13-30 inches > use 6-8 inches of soil

3. PLANT: Insert your plants into the soil, making sure the surface of each plant’s original root ball is even with the new soil.  

4. ADD ACCESSORIES: Add embellishments like fossils, rocks, gems or even fairy houses, etc. 

5. SEAL: Place the top onto the container and locate your container OUT OF DIRECT SUNLIGHT. 

6. MONITOR: Check on your terrarium every day for a week. For a sealed terrarium, you want the climate inside the container to develop its own weather patterns. Water should “rain” and drain and do it all over again. All without your help. If after several days you notice it clouds up and never clears up, crack the top for a few hours to let some moisture out. If it never seems to get cloudy or foggy, add a tiny bit of water (1-6 tablespoons depending on the size of your container). Then seal it back up and watch it for another week. Refrain from opening the top once the environment looks ok. Let it develop its own climate over time.  

FUN STUFF!