The classic terrarium is a closed glass container that maintains its own micro-climate. This means that once it has been planted it will need little attention. The three easiest types of terrarium for homeowners are the desert, tropical and woodland and each are designed for separate groups of plants. This article by Tom Oder which I found on the Mother Nature Net website contains a list of five plants for each type.
When creating a tranquil and soothing garden in a glass, you’ll have to address two questions up front: What kind of terrarium do you want and what are the best plants to put in it?
With those steps in mind, there are three primary types of terrariums that are easiest for homeowners to set up They are desert, tropical and woodland terrariums, advised Tassy de Give, owner of Home Sprout in Brooklyn, a modern home and garden center and think tank for bringing plant life and good design into homes and work spaces.
To help you get started, here are de Give’s suggestions for 15 great plants for desert, tropical and woodland terrariums.
What to put in desert terrariums
Varieties from the Echeveria genus can be real attention-grabbers in your terrarium. (Photo: Forest and Kim Starr/flickr)
Plants in these terrariums take full sun and should become totally dry between waterings.
1. Haworthia (zebra aloe) – A very sculptural and slow-growing plant, it’s also tolerant of lower light than most other succulents.
2. Jade plant – Easy to grow from small cuttings or leaves, lots of people like the “Zen” kind of feeling it provides.
3. Echeveria – Most varieties grow in a very eye-catching circular pattern, which can make a good focal point for a terrarium.
4. Kalanchoe – Varieties come in lots of shapes and sizes, most of which produce flowers at least once a year.
5. Lithops – These are the easiest succulents to maintain. They’re very drought-tolerant, slow-growing and they stay low to the soil, ideal for those people who don’t like to prune their plants.