Friday, March 21, 2014

Forgiving DIY Projects: Gumball Machine Terrarium

It's been a long winter and I am dying to get out in the garden.  Since that stinking groundhog says we have another century or so of winter left, I am having to make do by potting (and re-potting) around the house.  So today we are doing another terrarium.  There is no shortage of gumball terrarium tutorials on the web, but they really are incredibly easy.  I slapped mine together a few years ago with some plastic wrap to protect the gumball machine and no drainage to speak of so I thought it high time to redo mine in a reasonable manner and to add a little variety of plants.
 I highly recommend stripping out all the innards of the machine, leaving only the base, the globe, and the top.  Then fit an old plastic container to the space in the base (a Chinese take-out soup container worked well for me) and cut it so that the top of the container sits just below the rim of the base (so that the globe will sit correctly in the base).  If you want to do this really well, you would probably seal the meeting between base, container, and globe with some sort of sealant (preferably clear).  I didn't.
This just gives me less room (in terms of amount of soil) to work with since I can't fill more than the container with plant, soil, pebbles, water, moss, etc.  Cover the bottom of the container with pebbles or some other non-absorbing, non-well packing material to allow drainage.  Then I would recommend, since you don't have a lot of room, putting in your (non-root-bound) plants and filling in the dirt around them.  These need to be very shallow rooted plants.  Mosses are often found but I find that a variety of succulents including Christmas cactus (one of my favorites), ghost plant, and string of pearls work well.  Then add your globe and lid.  Et voila!

I am linking up to these great parties!


  1. Such a creative piece of decor! Wonderful job!

    1. Thanks so much! I have too much of an obsession with terrariums.



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