Create A Terrarium

a special feature by Alison Goldberg, Enrichment Teacher*

Now that spring has sprung, there’s a lot of fun stuff to do! One of my favorite activities to do is to create a Terrarium. With so many wonderful plants available and so many varieties, you can plant something delightful with your grandchild, and terrariums are really easy to make and maintain.

But, there are a few things to be aware of. Too much light can roast plants. Glass can act like a magnifier, be careful to keep the container out of direct sun. Because we are using succulents in this terrarium, be sure the plants live in a low moisture environment and leave space around each succulent in order for air to circulate. Have fun!



  • Smallish glass round bubble vase/ fish bowl
  • Polished pebbles
  • Horticultural charcoal
  • Cactus/succulent soil
  • Plastic spoons (for scooping)
  • 1-3 small succulents (depending on size of glass and size of succulents)
  • moss (optional)
  • mini jungle animal/ dinosaur toys (optional)


  1. Add a small layer of rocks to bottom of the glass vase (depends on size of vase but probably about an inch)
  2. Add an even layer of charcoal using a plastic spoon (depends on size of vase, but probably half an inch)
  3. Add a tiny layer of cactus soil using a plastic spoon
  4. Take succulents out of their containers. Gently squeeze the roots to loosen them up
  5. Put the succulents into the vase and gently push them down. Careful not to push too hard to push the pebbles and charcoal out of their even layers
  6. Add more soil around succulents to fill in empty space and create an even layer of soil
  7. Add moss and/or more pebbles around succulents to decorate
  8. Place mini toys in terrarium to create a jungle scene
  9. Place terrarium in sunlit window and enjoy!


*I’m Ali! I’m the Lead Enrichment Teacher at Piper Preschool. I develop and lead a wide array of classes including art, science, taste, construction, gardening, games, yoga, and literature. I’m a 30 year old, LA native, only child, raised by my single mother. My grandma,  “Ommy”, was my second parent. She was the funniest person I’ve ever known. When I was no older than 5, Ommy and I had a craft day where we made a life size paper dress for me. Ommy wrote my name across the chest of the dress. We looked in the mirror and Ommy read my name aloud: “Nosila Grebdlog”. This was of course my name, Alison Goldberg, read backwards as it looked in the mirror. From that day forward that was what Ommy affectionately called me. That craft day is one of many cherished memories with my Ommy.