Gardeners learn to make terrariums
This is the time of year when many people are anxious to be working in their gardens. But some people like to make a personalized garden inside.
Sharon Neff recently explained how to make a miniature garden — at one time called terrariums.
“There are three basic things you need for the plants,” she said. “You need water, light and fertilizer. Some plants have different needs, so when you're selecting your plants you don't want to have some that take a lot of water and some that don't.”
She noted that plants used in miniature gardens are cultivated to grow slow and stay small. Neff stressed the need to keep the plants out of direct light because they will burn.
When it comes to choosing what to contain the mini garden in, Neff said bowls, glasses, mason jars or other water-tight containers can be used. There are two types of terrariums — open and closed. Ones that are open have no lid and “can come into a room,” she said, noting they require more water. Closed ones have a lid and the environment is contained inside.
Those attending the presentation, hosted by Synergy Financial, had a chance to make their own terrariums.
In an assembly line process, they each took a box with a glass bowl, a bag of Spagnum Moss, a bag of soil and pea gravel for drainage. A plastic spoon served as the gardeners' shovel.
“There is an order for using those items,” Neff said. “You start out with the stones, then you place the moss, then about two-thirds of the soil. You will use the rest of the soil after the plants are in place.”
Next was plant selection. “You can pick three plants,” she said. “You should choose something tall like a jade plant or fern, something that blooms, then one other plant as well as some moss.”
She stressed the importance of unpotting plants properly. The key, she said, is not to pull the plant because that can tear the roots. “Turn the pot upside down and loosen the sides so the plant will come out easily.”
Although the garden is in a confined space, Neff suggested doing some landscaping to make the terrarium visually interesting. That can be achieved by putting some of the dirt to one side to create a mound where one of the plants can go. Moss can be used to create a knoll or a valley.
When all of the plants are in place, add the remaining soil.
The final step is to personalize the miniature garden. Small trinkets like dinosaurs, ladybugs, angels or mementos from a vacation like seashells can be added. Enhance a path to a favorite item with small stones.
Carol Waterloo Frazier is an editor for Trib Total Media. She can be reached at 412-664-9161, ext. 1916, or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- More Mon Valley communities add banners honoring veterans
- Yankee Doodle Dandies still going strong
- Homestead Cemetery records will be preserved
- Mon Valley motorists can expect more traffic woes
- Hazelwood man shot in Homestead
- Animal rights group protests in Pleasant Hills
- McKeesport Area students navigate obstacles
- Homestead to make street cycle-friendly
- Mon Valley region prepares to celebrate Fourth of July in style
- McKeesport council approves sewage treatment plant lease
- Jerome Bridge traffic signals removed in McKeesport