Upcycle Progress: Jar Terrariums

I originally considered a very different project… I am a fan of the Metal Earth series of miniature models laser-cut from thin sheets of steel, so I had planned to design and cut my own out of aluminum beverage cans. That turned out to be rather pricey and difficult to manage. So another idea came to me when I was going through my tupperware—I have a lot of empty jars. I’ve always wanted to make a terrarium. OMG LET’S MAKE A JAR TERRARIUM! And since I have several unique sizes and shapes, let’s make a cute little batch of them!

Pasta sauce, salsa, more salsa, and I think another salsa. Anyway, I’ve seen mason jar terrarium projects on Pinterest and Instagram and whatnot, and I’ve seen them both right-side-up (for ease of crafting and access for treatment) and up-side-down (for greater stability and more sunlight). I think even though it will be harder I’m going to go for up-side-down.

I like the challenge and would love not to have the lid in the way of sunlight and viewing. Since they’ll recycle much of their own byproducts and water, I shouldn’t have to take them out if I get the right combination. Hell, the oldest sealed terrarium in the world was last opened for watering in 1972!

So right now I’m at the stage where I’ve been to a few gardening supply stores—and crossed them all off my list since they only carry hardware and chemicals, got a few more to visit—and reading up on the proper ways to construct a long-lived, never-opened terrarium. I’ve done a few pictures to illustrate the concept with the equipment I have and the plants I’m familiar with, as well as a quick sketch to convey in the simplest terms the ingredients and construction process. Can’t wait to go get plants this week!

 

 

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2 Comments. Leave new

  • Scott Lowenstein
    February 5, 2017 11:22 pm

    This idea is awesome! I had no idea these could last for so long. How do you find the right mix of bio-material that can survive for so long? I do agree with Levi that getting the quantity of material you desire into the jar and getting everything to balance will be a challenge. Good luck, and I am excited to see how it comes out!

    Reply
  • Dude, your sketches are on point! One question, do the plants you plan to put in the jar not need water to live? I have made one of these back in high school, but it wasn’t nearly as nice look as the ones you plan to make and it didn’t last forever. I think you will have a hell of a time getting enough dirt and sand in there to keep the plants up right and close the jar.

    -Levi

    Reply

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