An amazing and colorful succulent terrarium first appeared in the shop windows of the 18th century and adorned the salons of titled ladies. The idea belonged to Nathaniel Ward – a naturalist researcher who was the first to guess to plant capricious tropical flowers and succulents inside a colorless terrarium, where a suitable microclimate was created for green beauties. 

Today, mini-succulent gardens in the succulent terrarium are gaining popularity again, becoming the decoration of houses, apartments, offices, and shops. 

Since many flowers and succulents from the southern countries require special conditions, creating a suitable microclimate in the container will allow you to enjoy the riot of rich colors of tropical guests.

You can buy a garden in a terrarium in stores, but the purchase of this decor element will cost the buyer a tidy sum. 

Succulent lovers prefer to build succulent terrariums with their own hands, creating a real little miracle. Before you learn how to make a succulent terrarium with your own hands, you need to study what types of greenery are suitable for the terrarium.

Care for a Succulent Terrarium

Caring for a succulent terrarium is minimal – these succulent plants love moisture and light but are not demanding to water. Caring for a composition with succulent plants is more difficult because they need a regular supply of fresh air, shading, and optimum temperature. Any greenhouse needs to be watered and fed.

Good Lighting for a Succulent Terrarium

It is undesirable to place the succulent terrarium under direct sunlight, even with heat-loving plants. According to the principle of operation, such compositions are similar to greenhouses, and direct sunlight sharply increases the temperature inside and disrupts the vital activity of plants.

Create and Care for Your Succulent Terrarium

If there is not enough light, which can be understood by the yellowness on the leaves, and the diseased type of plants, it is necessary to organize the backlight. You can use an ordinary fluorescent light bulb, which is located not on the side, but above the container.

In succulent terrariums, there are lights built into the lid. They can also be used, but not always.

In summer and spring, place the succulent terrarium on a windowsill or table in the northern part of the room, and in autumn and winter – closer to sunlight. But never place vessels near radiators and other heating devices.

Temperature for Succulent Terrarium

 Care for Your Succulent Terrarium

Most of the plants used for mini-greenhouses are thermophilic, therefore they tolerate the elevated air temperature in the room well. In general, succulents and flowering specimens grow well at a temperature of +22-28 ° C, many varieties tolerate temperature drops to +10 degrees and below.


In their natural environment, cacti, crassula, young, and other succulent plants suitable for a succulent terrarium grow in conditions of low humidity in deserts. With frequent or irregular tides, rotting can begin in the roots and ground parts. 

In addition, the decorative effect of the composition deteriorates significantly – drops of condensate and putrefactive deposits appear on the walls inside.

 Succulent Terrarium

Water the plants no more than 1-2 times a week, focusing on the degree of drying of the soil. Through transparent glass, you can see that the soil or moss has dried up, and wrinkled. In this case, it is necessary to water the soil over the entire area, trying not to get water on the inner walls of the vessel. 

The soil should be saturated, but water should not accumulate in the drainage layer. If you poured a lot of liquid, carefully tilt the vessel and use paper towels to scoop out excess moisture.

As water for irrigation, settled or filtered room temperature is used. When growing plants in open containers, spraying 1-2 times a week is recommended. 

Create Your Succulent Terrarium

Using a spray bottle, gently spray those parts of the plants that are in the upper half of the vessel. You can also use a household humidifier.

A miniature succulent terrarium in glass with succulents, trees, flowering plants, and cacti is not just another fashion trend, but an original decoration of an apartment or office that will not leave anyone indifferent.

Recently, it has become very popular to plant succulents and cacti in glass vases – terrariums. Now you can easily purchase a variety of geometric containers in online stores and even succulent terrariums with ready-made compositions. 

There is also a more economical option – to find a suitable glass vessel at home and fill it to your liking and desire. Succulent plants grow well in miniature succulent terrariums, this is due to the protection of the plant from drafts and temperature changes.

Create Different Types of Succulent Terrariums

round Succulent Terrarium

Succulent semi-desert in a candy vase

Such a succulent terrarium with cacti and other succulent plants is simple both in execution and care. But it is unusually beautiful due to the combination of several types of cacti (Gymnocalycium, echinopsis, milkweed, prickly pear) and stone rose – a plant called young.

The succulent terrarium with a semi-desert landscape in a vase is very beautiful and unpretentious

If you have the opportunity to use painted cacti, be sure to do so to brighten up the composition.

For this succulent terrarium, pick up a few cacti and succulent plants:

You Will Need

what you need for Succulent Terrarium
  • plants;
  • a low cylindrical candy vase;
  • soil for cacti and succulents;
  • small pebbles or expanded clay for drainage and the top decorative layer.

Vase, plants, soil, and expanded clay – everything you need for your semi-desert

Wash the vase in hot water, dry and degrease it, and then proceed to manufacture the succulent terrarium.


how to Create and Care for Your Succulent Terrarium
  1. Pour pebbles and expanded clay on the bottom of the vase with a layer of 2–3 cm. The height of the layer should be ¼ of the total height of the vase.
    Fill the bottom of the vase with small pebbles for drainage.
  2. Next, start filling in the soil (it is better to buy a ready-made product for the plants you have selected in the store). Its layer will be 2/4 of the total height.
    Lay soil on top
  3. Plant the plants in the ground at a distance of 2-3 cm from each other. And do it so that they are not buried very tightly. This is necessary in order to pour and evenly distribute another layer of small pebbles. Now you can compact the soil by gently pressing the pebbles and plants.
    Plant the plants and fill in a layer of small pebbles

Geometric Garden

Vessels of various complex geometric shapes are very fashionable now – from a simple pyramid to a pentakis dodecahedron. They have many faces, and not always symmetrical and the same in size, which is why the figure takes on a fantastic shape. 

steps to Create and Care for Your Succulent Terrarium

You can create such a vessel yourself, but you cannot do without certain special skills and tools. Therefore, it is better to buy a finished product and apply your imagination directly to the creation of a succulent terrarium in it.

Polygonal vessels are great for creating a succulent terrarium

You Will Need

  • polygonal vessel;
  • succulents – young, cereus, stonecrop Morgan, or others;
  • moss (sphagnum);
  • soil from leafy earth and river sand in equal proportions;
  • drainage (expanded clay or small pebbles);
  • decorative sand, pebbles, and figurines.

Prepare the vessel, plants, moss, soil, and tools

Create and Care for Your round Succulent Terrarium

When choosing a container, decide immediately on which edge it will stand. The thickness of the soil layer and the number of plants that fit in the succulent terrarium depend on this. 

The base of the composition – drainage, and soil – should be no more than 1/4 of the entire vessel, and most importantly – its level should be below the hole in the tank.


  1. The first layer is drainage. In its quality, as always, pebbles or small expanded clay will act. In the second layer, pour 1 mm of crushed activated carbon, which will act as an antiseptic.
    For drainage, pour a layer of expanded clay, on top – a little activated carbon
  2. Now lay the soil with a scoop, lightly tamp it and level it.
    Add a layer of soil
  3. Now plant the plants in the soil. To prevent the roots from becoming too crowded over time, keep a distance of 2-4 cm between plants.
    Plant plants, keeping a distance between them
  4. It remains only to pour a layer of decorative aquarium sand and lay out the pebbles. Your geometric succulent terrarium is ready!
    Sprinkle a decorative layer of pebbles and decorate the succulent terrarium with decorative figurines

Plant Selection for Your Succulent Terrarium

closeup on Succulent Terrarium

As part of the compositions in the terrarium used:

  • Miniature ferns – thanks to lace and openwork leaves, they look elegant and amazing.
  • Moss vegetation – will help create a soil cover.
  • Plaunk flowers – will create a green background and add volume.
  • Orchids – will create exotic and give a piece of the tropics. Orchids are capricious, and by organizing a mini-garden with orchids (it is called an orchidarium), you will have to make a lot of effort to care for them.

Succulents are placed in open-type succulent terrariums – a group of plants that absorb and store moisture:

  • Agave family.
  • Zamioculcas.
  • Aloe.
  • cacti.
  • Haworthia.
  • Younger.

What Is Required To Create A Good Succulent Terrarium?

To create a tiny succulent terrarium, you will need the following items:

  • Glass vessel – use standard aquariums, jars, and any other unpainted containers.
  • Substrate – for planting succulents, pebbles, expanded clay, or sandstone are used. You will need a lot of cover so that the soil absorbs and retains moisture.
  • Activated charcoal – added to the soil to eliminate odors.
  • Soil – depending on the type of flowers, different soils are used: for orchids, a type with tree bark is used, for succulents – sand.
  • Decorative elements – select to your taste: moss, figurines, pebbles, etc.
  • Tools – you will need for planting greens neatly and correctly.

Bonus: Secrets to Make Succulent Terrarium Yourself

modern Succulent Terrarium
  • First, a thin layer of sand or stones is laid out in the vessel, then a layer of soil is poured for planting.
  • The flower is being prepared for planting.
  • Deepenings with a diameter of 3-5 mm are formed in the soil, a little water is poured into them.
  • The roots of the flower are lowered into the hole and watered a little with water so that the roots straighten. When planting tiny flowers, use tweezers.
  • The soil is compacted using a light small object. At the end of planting, the surface is lightly powdered with soil or sand.
creative Succulent Terrarium

When planting vegetation, make sure that the leaves of the flowers do not touch the walls, otherwise, the leaves will dry out. 

At first, the vegetation is watered frequently, and when the microclimate is developed, the number and volume of irrigation decreases.


The purpose of the succulent terrarium is to decorate the room space and monitor the development of your favorite flowers. A miniature succulent garden in a succulent terrarium will not take up much space, and with proper care, it will delight the owner for a long time.