Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Little Wonder

I've loved terrariums since I was a child, and decided to put one together when my succulents were massacred by Mr. Littlejeans. Terrariums are easy to take care of, protected from my felines, and most importantly add a much needed pop of color and life to my apartment. Bringing the outside in is natural to us now, with indoor plants and fresh cut flowers populating the corners of our small living spaces, but when did this practice begin?

The history of terrariums goes back to the early 1800s. Discovered by accident in 1827, by London physician Dr. Nathaniel Ward, they have remained a popular option for urban dwellers. While experimenting with cocoons in covered jars, Dr. Ward also discovered tiny plants growing in the soil. Unlike many plants in his backyard that died from the polluted London air, these covered plants actually thrived. Dr.Ward then began experimenting successfully with enclosed containers for ferns, and as their popularity grew they were dubbed Wardian cases, the first terrariums.

Putting together one of these little wonders is really easy: all you need is a solid container, multiple layers of soil and drainage stones, and some flora. I found everything I needed, including various species of moss and ferns, through the fantastic DIY website Etsy. This is a great project that doesn't require much work, and doesn't break the bank - all you need is a dash of landscaping creativity to set the scene.

Hand crafted ceramic terrarium accessories (pictured above, ceramic mushroom and flowers) and vintage glass mushroom from Michael McDowell. Moss kits available from Teresa's Etsy shop.


  1. That looks great - I want to create one! Maybe we can craft one together when you come for a visity-poo in September!

  2. ohhhhh I wanna do this!