is key to having a fresh new living landscape

2 October 2017

Sometimes, a little plant just doesn’t make it, and dies. It’s nothing to worry yourself over – nature is just like that. Replacing an expired plant is very easy. Simply take a brush and gently sweep away any surrounding top-stone. Pluck the plant remains out, careful not to disturb any nearby live growth. Choose another plant that will fit nice and snugly into the vacated space. If need be, use a teaspoon to scoop out a small amount of soil to make space for the new plant’s root structure. Gently guide the roots into the hole. Replace any soil, and then brush the top stones back around the base of the new plant. Done!

Algae sometimes starts to grow around the base of drainage stones. This is harmless and nothing to worry about. If, however, the aesthetic of it bothers you, you have to replant the entire terrarium. Take a photo of it for reference first, and make sure you have all  the components you need before you start, such as pebbles and the correct soil type. Carefully remove all the plants. Gently scrape out the soil and pebbles, careful not to scratch the glass. Scrub the algae off the glass with chlorine-free water from the mountains or use distilled bottled water. Do not use chemical cleaners, as residue will get into the soil and harm the plants. Replant, using the photo reference. Pebbles first, then soil, then plants.

If your plants are happy and start to outgrow your terrarium, you have a few different options. Some plants, like some succulent and all bonsai, can simply be trimmed to size. Other times, you may wish to remove the plant in it’s entirety. If you do, it’s an easy matter to transfer it to the garden or into a large pot. Always ensure that the plant you replace with likes the same conditions as the other plants already in the terrarium! Spring and Summer are the best time to replant because this is when the plants are at their strongest.

Moss can be difficult for a beginner. Do not despair if it dies – this is simply a symptom of poor ventilation. If it is dark green and a bit soggy, mist it less often. If it is bright green and starts to go brown and crispy on the tips, mist it more often. Make sure it gets adequate air flow! It’s easy to find moss near rivers and in shady areas. To replace the old moss with the new, simply lift and remove the old moss, placing the new moss mat over the exposed soil. We also sell live moss in store.

Above all, enjoy the experience! Don’t give up. To keep a terrarium is to fall in love with a small world that is entirely your own. Maintain continuous care and respect for the little lives you uphold. The journey is the reward.

You can download our planting instructions here:

Desert | Woodland