Last Updated on July 17, 2021 by Marco C.
Many people have been asking how often to water a terrarium. So, we have decided to cover on our blog today how to successfully own a terrarium and grow beautiful plants indoors.
Overwatering or underwatering is a common problem for most plant owners. Before anything else, let’s get to know what a terrarium is.
What Is A Terrarium?
Terrariums are mini gardens, housed inside a small glass container. You can use bottles and jars to make a terrarium. Albeit small, it is a complete ecosystem for plants to grow.
As a fully functioning ecosystem, it is mostly self-sustaining with the plants watering themselves through transpiration and condensation. Thanks to science something as amazing as this has been invented.
How Often To Water A Terrarium: Condensation Guide
So now let’s get to the watering technique.
The main technique to remember when watering the plants in your terrarium is to never air at the surface. You do not want water to fall on the plants or the leaves as it may kill your plants.
The correct technique for water is to spray water to the sides of the plants and on the soil. Make a stop every time to check how wet it is. You don’t want water to flood the terrarium.
Excess water can easily destroy your plants. Also, when your terrarium has too much moisture, it can easily grow molds and smell bad. Since they are fragile, you don’t also want to ruin their design.
For example, if you pour water directly into the terrarium chances are, you will lose control and flood the plants. Or it is possible that the falling water will remove the plants in the terrarium.
Read more about: Planting Succulents In Rocks Indoors
Don’t Water When There Is Condensation On The Glass Surface.
Whenever you see moisture on the sides of your terrarium, it is an obvious warning that your plants are not up for watering yet. Moreover, what you are seeing is not just some kind of moist.
The droplets of water that you can see on the side are called condensation. Plants do breathe and during photosynthesis they produce condensation. It increases the amount of heat inside the terrarium.
You would often see condensation in closed terrariums. When there is condensation, you don’t have to water because it will eventually leak down to the soil and make it moist.
If you have made the mistake of pouring too much water on the soil, you should correct this as soon as possible. We suggest that you use paper towels to absorb the excess water. You can also place your terrarium under the sun. It helps accelerate the process of water evaporation.
Provider Proper Ventilation
You should always ventilate your closed terrarium. Open the lid and let the air come out. Create a schedule to do this. It helps release trapped heat and water inside.
Note that watering also depends on the type of container. You should water seldomly if your container is closed. You do not have to water all the time.
Remember closed terrarium may require more monitoring. If you happen to miss ventilation for a week or two, your plant could die inside. You should also mist plant glass bowls or glass globes.
If you are using vases, you do not need much watering and ventilation. Dome bell jars require both wiping and watering every two to three weeks. If you are using a “Wardian” vase, you should put it near a window. Let it open to remove condensation and allow some air to get in.
Watering A Terrarium and Plant Types
So how often to water a terrarium?
Your watering schedule will also depend on what type of plant you have. Different succulent variety needs their own way of watering. Air plants require light spraying so as not to pour or squirt water on them.
Succulents can handle higher steam sprays. Also, consider the size of the container you are using to the speed and amount of spray.
Now let’s review how much water your succulent needs based on the size of the terrarium. Always remember to keep it ventilated. So, for succulents, spray them with water every 7 to 10 days. Reduce watering frequency to 10 to 15 days when winter comes.
When summer comes, it is an active time for succulents to grow. This means you need to water them more frequently. Just spray water on the terrarium every 7 to 8 days. Do not pour water into it.
The key is to provide water enough to keep the soil moist. How much water should you pour?
You can follow our guidelines. Just use 60ml of water for small-sized containers. Or you can pour around 10ml of water under each plant. Do not wet the leaves. Just pour the water directly into the soil.
Medium-sized containers around 20-25cm will require 120ml of water. For large containers, you need around 225ml of water. Remember to just spray the water. You don’t want to flood your plants and kill them.
How Often To Water A Terrarium: Overwatering Vs Underwatering
Succulents are easily underwater or overwater. We guess this is where everyone is having a struggle. You need to watch out for signs of both.
As a succulent owner or collector, you must be alert. If your succulents have falling leaves, it means that they are dying and need a bit more water or sunlight.
If you notice the leaves to be yellowish and start to become squishy, it means you might have overwatered them. You need to ventilate them and expose them to the sunlight to dry.
Another symptom of overwatering is dead roots due to insufficient oxygen. In this case, you need to take out your plant and check for rotting roots.
If you find any black roots, you have to remove them. Then plant your succulents back to the terrarium. Follow our watering schedule. You need to water seldom, expose it to indirect sunlight, and place it in a location with proper humidity.
Succulents can thrive with a proper combination of the watering technique, humidity, light, and temperature.