TERRARIUM CARE GUIDE
Love Plants, Love Life!
Botanical Boys offer our best advice based on our experience with building terrariums for our clients.
How does your terrarium survive
Your terrarium is a self-sustainable environment with special plants suitable for the humid conditions. It recycles it’s water, Oxygen and Carbon Dioixide and photosynthesises using the natural light. When you get your terrarium home it will need time to settle into it’s new environment.
Remove the lid half way to allow some aeration for the first 2 to 3 days. This allows the terrarium to get used to it’s new environment and can reduce the chances of mould appearing due to excess humidity.
Avoid placing your terrarium next to a hot radiator.
Avoid placing your terrarium in direct sunlight, as it prefers a fairly low light position.
Regulating your terrarium
If there is a lot of condensation inside the terrarium that you cannot see the plants, it just means there is a little too much moisture inside the garden. Remove your lid for a couple of hours to regulate this. You may need to do this on a daily basis for the first week or two but once the terrarium settles it will eventually won’t need regulating for many months at a time.
Your terrarium needs some condensation on the glass for it’s water cycle to work and this is mostly seen when temperatures in the room change. On cold mornings you will likely find more condensation in the terrarium than in the afternoons as temperatures equalise both inside and outside the terrarium. The trick is to get your terrarium to a point that the glass has some small droplets of water and that you can still see your plants clearly.
Preventing Mould Growth
Mould is a natural part of the eco-system, but we want to reduce this inside your terrarium. If you air out your garden in the first few weeks then this risk significantly reduces. If you see any mould (white/grey fluffy substance) open your lid and wipe it off and wash your hands afterwards. Leave lid off for a few hours as it may just be a little too moist inside the terrarium. Replace lid and monitor. If there are any further mould growth it could mean that there is a potential mould infestation and will need cleaning out and new plants replaced.
Watering your terrarium
Your terrarium may require watering from time to time. If it’s not a completely sealed lid then the terrarium can get a little dry after a few months. If it’s dry the plants will look a little wilted and the soil will feel dry. Using a small water spray just pump up to 4 times in your garden with rain or distilled water, avoid tap water, it’s not ideal. Again just monitor it for mould and air out if necessary repeating the first few steps in this guide.
30 day guarantee
If you have followed all of our advice but a plant has suffered for any reason (as in nature we cannot always avoid these things happening) then we offer all our customers a replacement plant and if you are local you can pop in by letting us know in advance to come and replace and we will do a quick health check within your 30 day period. Even after your 30 days we are always here to offer advice.
Please see below some of the plants we use in our terrariums
Colourful plants with nerve – like structures, also commonly known as “Nerve Plant”. They are from South American jungles and are used to dappled shade and moist conditions, but not wet!
Ivy tends to grow fairly quickly, simply prune from time to time if required. Leaves can go brown if too dry. Avoid too much moisture. Give them a light pruning from time to time if necessary. If you have the variegated (several shades of green on the leaves) then it will need a little natural light to keep it’s colour.
Hill shaped thick moss is perfect for green landscapes and add true nature to your terrarium garden. They like to be kept moist. Remember moisture from the moss equals moisture in your terrarium, so avoid watering plants too much. If it goes brown, remove the brown bits. It will grow upwards over time.
Chamaedorea (meaning “ground gift”)
A native palm to subtropical and tropical regions (also known as Parlour Palm) they can be used in terrariums but will need a little pruning at times as they will grow tall over time. They give a terrarium a very tropical look and feel. They like high humidity but not soaking wet.
Ficus Ginseng trees
Native to Africa and Asia, these little trees love to be kept in humid conditions. They will not require regular watering inside your terrarium unless the terrarium gets too dry. Check soil from time to time, if it’s very dry water your terrarium. Pruning me if I get a little too bushy is easy, simply snip off the stems that have got a little bushy. This tree is part of the rubber family, so when you do snip the stems a white milky latex will flow out. It is sticky, so wash your hands, but it will seal itself up.
Polyscia Trees (meaning “many shade”)
A fantastic indoor tree that actually tolerates shade quite well. I grow straight up by producing leaves from the bottom. I am native to the South Pacific region. It is also related to ginseng tree and Ivy. They add a lovely green woodland feel to your terrarium. Likes humid conditions and does not need a lot of watering in your terrarium. It can grow to over 1m in an open pot, but to keep it from going too tall, just prune the stems back a little if it goes too big over time.
Native to South America region, they are tropical humid loving plants, commonly known as Friendship Plants. If they trail too long, simply prune them back, gives you a great excuse to do some micro garden maintenance.