Repurposed Terrariums: Truly Eco-Friendly

Feb 26, 2009 by

Has your green thumb been swept up by revival in terrariums?  I am loving the resurgence in terrariums, as I personally am obsessed with miniature plants and moss.  With a handful of pebbles, a layer of charcoal, and slow growing, moisture-loving plants, you can enjoy your own eco-friendly world.

You know that I love repurposed plant containers, and the possibilities for terrariums are endless, as nearly any container, bottle, and even chandelier can be repurposed into chic terrariums.  Here are some repurposed terrarium ideas for your green pleasure!


Preston Baily prepares for a tea party the only way he can – by creating terrariums from vintage cake stands sprinkled with fresh flowers.  Using fresh flowers is an instant way to temporarily spruce up a terrarium for a special event.


The stylish duo behind Wary Meyers show that even the humblest of pickle jars can be repurposed into a terrarium.  It only takes an ability to see outside of the jar, so to speak.


From a repurposed chandelier (1970s esq, true?), Design Spunk created a very stylish accent to her workspace.  I love the contrast of the vintage metal against the delicate orchids.


In a similar vein of inspiration, Kat Geiger of Design Spunk took a broken lamp and turned it into a lovely upcyled terrarium.   This one is available for purchase in the aptly named GreenUnderGlass Etsy shop!


Madebymavis showcases the beauty of upcycling in the terrariums for sale in her Etsy shop.  From upcycled maple syrup jars to salt and pepper shakers, her repurposed terrariums are the epitome of eco-friendly creativity.


Madebymavis strikes again with an ingenious upcycled terrarium.  I love that this one serves dual purposes, creating an eco-friendly ambiance.


With the holidays well behind us, what shall we do with the remaining ornaments?  Regardless of the time of year, you can always enjoy an ornament terrarium inspired by Charleston Home Magazine.  This would make a lovely holiday gift too!


Artist Robert Quinn shows us that small is beautiful.  These are tiny terrariums beautifully showcased in a frame.  One could even take a petri dish set, turn it on its side, and put it into a frame to create a work of living art.


Not sure what to do with all of those obsolete incandescent lightbulbs now that you’ve switched to the crazy spiral ones?   Turn it into a terrarium, but of course!  While this lightbulb terrarium by JohnKit has not fully propagated, didn’t the idea lighbulb go off in your head?

Are you growing a terrarium in your home?   Please tell us about what type of container you are using to house your eco-sphere!

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  1. Such smart ideas! I don’t have a green thumb but I’d like to try making a terrarium this spring =)

  2. I just posted about the terrarium we received in the mail. Loving it! I was feeling like I wanted a couple of more here or there or three clustered in different sizes. Love that you’ve just given me tons of food for thought… hmmm what will they go in?

  3. I love those MadeByMavis ones! The little syrup dispenser one is adorable.

    I love the cake stand one too, but I don’t think I could ever bring myself to sacrifice one of my precious stands.

  4. they are the greatest little forests. i really love the maple syrup jar. i have one and would love to try it. i have a very sad traditional terrarium my mom had in the 1970s. i really need to get some plants and moss. i’ve tried, but they don’t last for me :(.

  5. Jon

    I must say that each picture was more creative than the next in this series. Gives me something to think about when I consider discarding old items – nice work.

  6. I have had making a terrarium on my to-do list for AGES! They are so magical. I found an old glass cheese dome at Goodwill that is going to be just perfect! Now if I could only find the time to sneak off to the nursery and get the plants!

  7. I recall making terrariums when I was a young kid. Used to enjoy having a little world in my bedroom. Think I used old bottles which my mom was tossing. The Xmas ball and the cake stand are my favs!

  8. Wow, I was just on a terrarium quest this past weekend! I made two, and I’m really loving them:

  9. These look similar to what I have been making- I am also making tiny alien creatures to accessorize the terrariums

  10. they are the largest forest of small

  11. Hey! I just discovered your site and all the fabulous terrariums. I’m so inspired. If you aren’t terrarium’d out check my blog I’ve made some terrariums that are also, repurposed. Sort of.

  12. Hey, I just hopped over to your site via StumbleUpon. Not somthing I would normally read, but I liked your thoughts none the less. Thanks for making something worth reading.

  13. So not really on the same topic as your post, but I found this today and I just can’t resist sharing. Mrs. Agathe’s dishwasher quit working so she called a repairman. Since she had to go to work the next day, she told him, “I’ll leave the key under the mat. Fix the dishwasher, leave the bill on the counter, and I’ll mail you the check. Oh, and by the way…don’t worry about my Doberman. He won’t bother you. But, whatever you do, do NOT under ANY circumstances talk to my parrot!” When the repairman arrived at Mrs. Agathe’s apartment the next day, he discovered the biggest and meanest looking Doberman he had ever seen. But just as she had said, the dog simply laid there on the carpet, watching the repairman go about his business. However, the whole time the parrot drove him nuts with his incessant cursing, yelling and name-calling. Finally the repairman couldn’t contain himself any longer and yelled, “Shut up, you stupid ugly bird!” To which the parrot replied, “Get him, Spike!”

  14. @Markus I get your drift on where you were going there. I often think of my past and use it as a means to analyze where I am and where I want to get to. Where I struggel is balancing it all out. How do you guys balance things out?

  15. Hi, i must say fantastic website you have, i stumbled across it in Yahoo. Does you get much traffic?

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    I would like to join your blog anyway so please continue sharing with us,


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  21. What a fun pattern! It’s great to hear from you and see what you’ve sent up to. All of the projects look great! You make it so simple to this.Thanks!

    So great , I like it

  22. Pretty good post.I found your website perfect for my needs. thanks for sharing the great ideas.

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  1. Project Terrarium « - [...] out the simple instructions included in the photo, which I found at Poetic Home.  For the full tutorial visit…
  2. Obsessions | Terrariums « Design Sensibility - [...] Here’s some purty pictures to help inspire your terrarial experimentation…     For these and more check out this Poetic Home article on re-purposing…

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