On a recent stroll along Queen West, I came across an ethereal plant boutique. Somewhere between the lush greenery and the in-house juice bar, I stumbled upon the coolest terrariums that I had ever seen; confirming that I had entered millennial nirvana.
It’s no secret: millennials love plants. We have even incorporated them into our makeup. However, before the green revolution overtook my Instagram feed, the only plant enthusiasts that I knew were over 40 and had Costco memberships.
But the tides have turned.
Terrariums last rose to popularity in the 1970s and earlier this year we predicted that some retro trends would be making their way back into our homes in 2017. While we didn’t project the return of the terrarium, they have definitely made a comeback over the last few years and it appears that they are here to stay.
Housed in compact glass vessels, terrariums are essentially mini-ecosystems that make optimal impact and require minimal maintenance; like seriously. On the spectrum of dependents, it’s children, pets, houseplants, and then terrariums, in order of most demanding to least.
This is especially convenient for forgetful folks, jet-setters, those who abide by the ‘never not working’ philosophy, and people who love plants but loathe the unending upkeep.
When kept away from harsh sunlight, the plants in terrariums hold their own by absorbing the condensation that accumulates on the walls of the glass and drips into the soil, functioning kind of like a miniature greenhouse.
For millennials making their way into the housing market, terrariums can also serve as the stylish solution to space limitations. Tiny tabletop terrariums can house a number of plant species that would otherwise require floor or surface space that simply isn’t available to certain folks.
So aesthetics aside, the inclusive factor is an enticing incentive. Being largely self-reliant and impressively impervious to their surrounding environment, any home can house a terrarium, regardless of the challenges or limitations presented by your space or under-developed gardening savvy.
Terrariums can be affordable or expensive, but either way they’re a long-lasting investment and can even be an engaging DIY if you’re in pursuit of extra bragging points.
Keep these tips in mind when you’re assembling and caring for your terrarium:
1) Extra breathing room
If you’re assembling a DIY terrarium, be wary of overcrowding. Even though it’s tempting to pile in the succulents and stones, try to have some foresight and account for the space your plants will need to grow.
2) Picking plants
Be mindful of the plants that you’re including in your DIY terrarium. For closed terrariums, plants should have a high tolerance for humidity. Good examples include African Violets and moss. For open terrariums, cacti and succulents are better choices.
Also try to consider that plants should have similar sun requirements and tolerances to ensure a seamless care routine.
3) Sparing sunlight
Placing your terrarium in direct sunlight? Rookie mistake. Distance your terrarium from harsh rays, especially if it has a closed top. With that being said, low-light plants aren’t no-light plants. Make sure that it still has some access to sunlight.
4) Conscious watering
Terrariums are notoriously low-maintenance - almost to a fault. Overwatering is a common misstep with unpleasant consequences so water only when needed and wipe away any excess moisture that develops on the glass.
Good luck and happy planting!