Open Terrarium

An open terrarium is a type of container garden designed to house plants, typically of a small size, without a lid or cover. Unlike closed terrariums, which create a sealed environment with high humidity, open terrariums allow for greater air circulation and are ideal for plants that prefer a drier environment. Here are some common uses and benefits of open terrariums:

Uses of Open Terrariums

Home Decor:

Open terrariums add a touch of greenery and natural beauty to indoor spaces. Their aesthetic appeal makes them popular for decorating homes, offices, and other indoor areas.

Plant Display:

They are an excellent way to display small plants, particularly succulents and cacti, which thrive in the drier conditions provided by open terrariums.

Educational Purposes:

Open terrariums can be used in educational settings to teach students about plant biology, ecosystems, and the care of different plant species.

Stress Relief:

Caring for plants and maintaining a terrarium can be a relaxing and stress-relieving activity, providing a sense of accomplishment and connection to nature.

Hobby and Craft:

Many people enjoy creating and customizing terrariums as a hobby, experimenting with different plant combinations and decorative elements like stones, moss, and miniature figures.

Benefits of Open Terrariums

Low Maintenance:

Open terrariums typically require less maintenance than traditional potted plants or closed terrariums. The open design allows excess moisture to evaporate, reducing the risk of mold and root rot.

Improved Air Circulation:

The open design ensures better air flow, which is beneficial for many plants that are prone to fungal issues in stagnant air conditions.


Open terrariums can accommodate a variety of plants that prefer different light and moisture levels, making them versatile for different indoor environments.


The open design allows for creative arrangements and the inclusion of decorative elements, enhancing the visual appeal of the terrarium.

Space Efficiency:

They are compact and can fit into small spaces, making them ideal for urban dwellers with limited room for larger plants.

Plants Suitable for Open Terrariums


Echeveria, Haworthia, Aloe, and Crassula species are well-suited due to their low water requirements.


Small cacti varieties thrive in the dry conditions of open terrariums.

Air Plants:

Tillandsia species can be placed in open terrariums, as they do not require soil and benefit from the good air circulation.

Ferns and Mosses:

Certain types of ferns and mosses can also do well, provided they are watered appropriately.

Creating an Open Terrarium

Choose a Container:

Select a glass container with an open top, such as a bowl, vase, or jar.


Start with a layer of small stones or pebbles for drainage, followed by activated charcoal to prevent odors and mold. Add a layer of sphagnum moss to keep the soil from settling into the drainage layer.

Add Soil:

Use a well-draining potting mix suitable for the plants you choose.


Arrange your plants in the soil, leaving space between them to allow for growth.


Add decorative elements like rocks, sand, or miniature figurines to enhance the visual appeal.


Place the terrarium in a location with appropriate light for the plants. Water sparingly, as overwatering is a common mistake in open terrariums.

Open terrariums offer a beautiful, low-maintenance way to enjoy indoor gardening and bring a bit of nature into your living space.