We had a great time this weekend digging through the memory boxes for stones, shells and sea-things collected from our travels to make aquatic habitats for our new Marimo.
All you need is a glass container, filtered water, Marimo and decor. We chose to use pieces that we picked up at beaches, lakes and bays while traveling. Be sure to wash or boil your treasures before adding them to the habitat to make sure they are free of salt water and bacteria. It’s a good habit to do this with your shells and collectable items when you return home from a trip nonetheless- so they don’t smell or bring uninvited pests into your home. Rinse your Marimo balls, give them a good squeeze, roll them around in your hand a bit and them drop them in their new home.
Keep in mind that Marimo are alive. They need partial but not bright sunlight and every now and then it’s a good idea to freshen the water. You will notice that the Marimo rise to the surface and sink back down again, this is normal and a part of the fascination with having a living plant-ball in your habitat. If your Marimo never moves, then you may want to use a chopstick and roll it over every now and then to maintain its shape.
So what’s a Marimo? It looks like a tiny ball of moss, but in actuality it’s filamentous green lake algae that, at times, grows into fuzzy velvety looking balls. Read more about them here and watch this video to learn how to care for (and replicate) them.
And when making your own, keep in mind that a Marimo habitat would also make a great gift
Here’s the other one we made:
Here on the east coast the days seem shorter and the air is brisk, leaves have been falling and the trees are almost bare. The time has come for enjoying cool weather hikes and cleaning up our yards in preparation for winter chill. And as we do, we come across a bountiful and natural selection of potential holiday decorations.
Last weekend a friend came bearing bags of pinecones from small to large. He taught me how to make wreaths and centerpieces out of dying vines and tall grass. We added pinecones as accents and decorated the house for fall. After we were done, I found myself with over half a bag to pinecones to spare. So this weekend, I bought a can of neon paint and brightened them up a bit. Here are the results.
These neon pinecone ornaments are so easy and yield such popping results that you’ll want to make them for everyone you know. The two most important things you need are primer, so you really get those neon brights, and an open space in which to work.
For a little extra pizazz, I added a layer of silver glitter spray paint to the cones once the neon color was dry. It’s so easy to get carried away!
Wrap fishing wire around the end of each pinecone, double knot and hang.
I can’t wait to hang some on a real tree, and give the other half away as gifts!
After a nice long summer of travel and beaches, there’s nothing like settling back into the snuggly fall weather with a little home updating. After hanging the awesome Chris Marley owl butterfly we bought over the summer, we moved on to the air plants we brought back from Cape Cod and the beautiful hexagonal terrarium. I have to say, there is nothing easier to make and maintain than an air plant terrarium. They are simple to assemble and the plants only need an occasional spritzing or a weekly dunk in water to thrive. I love our new terrarium and our warm and natural corner redo.
All you need for this is a container, gardening moss and a few air plants. Simple is better, but you can also add a favorite rock or mineral, shells collected on a favorite vacation, driftwood twigs, etc.
I purchased a couple of new plants for spring. I figured that they could live in their plastic planters for another month or so before I transfer them to new pots… but those ugly green plastic things didn’t sit so pretty on my windowsill. So, for the next few weeks the plastic planters will sit nestled inside of empty tomato cans. Wallah, beautiful!!
Last summer I started a succulent terrarium and taught you how to do the same. (see the instructions here) This summer, I took some clippings and started a tiny new terrarium.
Most succulents propagate quite easily. Many websites list long and complicated rooting rituals which include special serums and plastic enclosures , but I’ve found that snipping off a piece and placing it cut side down in moist soil will often times do the trick.
*** click on the pictures to see details in full size ***
Empty tomato cans make the perfect pot for a seasonal Italian herb garden. See my old post for easy instructions on growing green at home. Bon Appetit!
New home. New needs. New uses for old projects.
Assembling a terrarium is rather simple, provided you have the right materials. The easiest to maintain is a succulent terrarium like this, for it requires lots of light and little water.
To get started you need to find a glass container. I used an old cookie jar, but anything from a glass vase to an empty pickle jar will do. Unlike a tropical terrarium, a succulent habitat is open air and does not require a lid.
The layers are outlined visually above…
Starting at the bottom, add rocks for drainage. For a personal touch, I added a layer of shells I collected recently at the beach (this is not required).
On top of the rocks, place a thin layer of charcoal. Charcoal for plants is sold almost anywhere you can buy soil, just ask. The charcoal layer helps to absorb impurities and prevent fungus from growing in the container.
After the charcoal, a layer of cactus soil, then your plants. If possible, leave a little space between your plants to give them room to multiply and grow.
09/16/09 The newest additions to my household…
The mini terrarium, made with an empty salsa jar and old fish tank gravel & the floating terrarium, inspired from this project.
Creating this beautiful floating herb garden is simple, all you need are a few empty jars and a quick trip to the hardware store. The steps to make your own are outlined in the gallery below… be sure to click on the pictures to see the detail.
(click on an image to enlarge)