How to Make an Air Plant Terrarium

If you’re looking to bring a little taste of nature into your home, try making an air plant terrarium. Creating a terrarium is simple and can be a fun process for both children and plant-lovers. It’s as easy as getting a glass terrarium, then filling it with sand, rocks, and other decorations. Air plants are hardy, so they don’t require much maintenance. Build your terrarium, decorate it, and then let it liven up your home.

[Edit]Steps
[Edit]Designing a Terrarium
Select up to 3 Tillandsia plants for your terrarium. Air plants, called Tillandsia, grow to be a variety of different sizes, so it’s worth picking the ones you want before choosing a terrarium container. Many of them grow up to long and across. However, there are some varieties that grow as much as long and won’t last long in a terrarium. If you’re uncertain about how many to get, start with 1 and then add more later if you have room for them.[1]
Some good terrarium varieties include loliacea, funkiana, and stricta. Tillandsia stricta gets a little bigger than the other ones, so you may not be able to fit more than one in a single terrarium.
Tillandsia is sometimes sold as clumps. Clumps are multiple plants growing together into a ball. Clumps tend to be stronger than individual plants. They are likely to continue growing with proper care, which could be a problem if you’re short on space.
You can order air plants online. They hold up well during shipping, but, if you’re worried about getting good plants, you may be able to find some at a home and garden center.
Pick a vented glass container to house your plants. Once you have decided upon a plant size, find a quality container to match. These containers come in a variety of different sizes and styles, so keep in mind how you want the finished terrarium to look. Round terrariums are great for most small air plants, but make sure yours has an open top or side. Teardrop and pyramid-shaped containers fit Tillandsia stricta well, but make sure it has a missing panel on the top or side for ventilation.[2]
The vent size can vary depending on the terrarium you choose.
Consider where you’re going to put the terrarium. Some containers are meant to be placed on a flat surface instead of hung up. Make sure you get one with a rope or hook if you want to hang your terrarium!
You could also repurpose glass bowls or Mason jars for your terrarium. Most will be about in diameter or more. As long as plenty of air can get in, your air plant will be safe.
The containers, as well as the remaining supplies needed for the terrarium, are available online and at most home and garden centers.
Choose sand, pebbles or another base for the terrarium. Select something lightweight that doesn’t retain a lot of water. If you’re looking for a simple option, get some coarse aquarium or sandbox sand. Aquarium gravel or polished pebbles can bring some color to your terrarium. Use decorative moss or crushed, recycled glass to make your terrarium unique.[3]
Air plants don’t need soil. Soil absorbs moisture and can cause the plants to rot, so you’re better off avoiding it.
Try layering different bases to give your terrarium more style. For instance, you could mix white sand, colored pebbles, and crushed glass.
Get bark, shells and other items if you wish to decorate the terrarium. These decorations aren’t necessary, but they are useful for filling space inside the terrarium. Many decorations, such as bark and sticks, can be found outdoors, but make sure they are dry and free of bugs before putting them in the terrarium. Scatter some decorative moss or aquarium shells around for color. With careful decorating, you can make your terrarium look like a small piece of nature.[4]
When choosing decorations, keep in mind how much space you have available in your terrarium. Select decorations sparingly to avoid overcrowding the air plants.
To ensure your air plants are safe, buy decorations instead of getting them outdoors. You could get orchid bark from a hardware store, for instance.[Edit]Constructing the Terrarium
Add sand in at least a -thick layer to the terrarium. Pour the sand into the terrarium first so it forms a base for you to build on. Try using plain, regular-colored sand for an inexpensive base that fits well with most terrarium designs. Level the sand out with your hand afterward.[5]You could use other colors of sand as well. For example, you might use blue sand instead, then decorate with shells or other plants to give the terrarium an ocean theme.
If you’re not planning on using other types of base material for decoration, you could fill the terrarium with more sand. However, make sure the air plant has plenty of room to grow.
Brighten the terrarium with a layer of colored sand or other material. Sand comes in all sorts of different colors you can use to turn your terrarium into something vibrant and unique. If you’re looking for something different, spread a -thick layer of rocks or recycled glass. Rocks and glass add a variety and are a good option if you don’t want your terrarium to look like a miniature desert or beach.[6]For example, you could alternate layers of colored and regular sand to customize the terrarium with a pattern. Try using your favorite colors to make your terrarium stand out!
The additional layers can be as thick as you want as long as you save enough room for the plants and any other decorations you wish to add.
Place some scrap wood around the terrarium for forest theme. Get a couple of pieces of driftwood and spread them throughout the terrarium. Make sure you have room between the wood to fit the air plants. You could turn one piece of wood upside down and mount the air plant onto it for an alternative way to incorporate these decorations. Scrap wood goes well with black, brown, or regular sand for a natural look.[7]
Small pieces of scrap wood can also fit well next to a couple of shells placed on plain sand.
Use shells to create a beach theme for your terrarium. After filling the terrarium with plain sand or colorful aquarium sand, choose a couple of pretty shells you like. Make sure they are small enough to fit comfortably inside the terrarium. Set them down on top of the sand near where you plan on putting the air plants. It makes the air plants look like they grew up naturally from the sand rather than having been placed in the middle of all these decorations.[8]Match the shells to the base material you used. Colored shells go well with plain sand, but they might not stand out as much with bright, colored sand.
If you’re decorating with multiple shells, use different types of shells placed at different angles. Arrange them to make your terrarium more varied.
Use decorative plants or coral to give your terrarium more variety. Get some aquarium coral, such as a red or black sea fan. Another option is to add a plant like a yarrow and rest it inside one of the terrarium vents. These decorations add plenty of color to your terrarium without taking nutrients away from the air plants. Spread them around so it looks like the air plants grew side by side with the decorative plants or coral.[9]Decorative moss is great for adding color to plain sand. It works very well if your terrarium is designed to look like a desert.
Place the air plants on top of the material in the container. Air plants don’t have roots and don’t need to be buried. Set them down gently in a spacious spot to let them adapt to their new home. Make sure the plants aren’t pressed up against the decorations or the walls of the terrarium. It helps them spread their leaves and dry off in case they get wet.[10]If the plants feel wet, set them aside for about 15 minutes before putting them in the terrarium. Moisture could cause them to rot. Burying the plants in the base material also forces more water onto them.
It is possible to set air plants inside shells and other objects. However, make sure the shell is open with enough space for the plant to grow out of it.
Secure the air plants with glue if you wish to mount them to decorations. Plan out the terrarium first by placing all decorations, then setting the plants where you intend on mounting them. Select a nontoxic adhesive like a silicone sealant, then spread a thin but consistent dab of it on the mounting surface. Gently but firmly press the plant onto the adhesive to stick it in place. Leave the plant undisturbed for about 24 hours to ensure the glue has time to solidify.[11]
You could also tie the air plant down for a less permanent attachment. Use a long-lasting, sun resistant material like cable ties and place them loosely around the plant’s stem.
Make sure you mount air plants to nontoxic surfaces. Treated wood has copper in it that harms air plants. Painted and stained wood may also have dangerous chemicals.[Edit]Choosing a Spot for the Terrarium
Place the terrarium in an area that receives 1 to 3 hours of indirect sunlight a day. Try keeping your terrarium within of a nearby window. Use east, north, or south-facing windows in your home, since they let in the most sunlight. Air plants won’t last if they are kept in the dark or in dim light all day.[12]
You could also set the terrarium within of an artificial light.
As long as you keep air plants well-watered, they can withstand more direct sunlight and hotter temperatures.
Select a spot away from cold and moisture for the terrarium. Air plants are tropical, so they don’t do well in cold weather. Keep your terrarium away from air conditioners and drafty windows, for example. These sources also tend to introduce too much moisture to the terrarium. Air plants do best in environments above , so they survive well inside homes.[13]
Keep your terrarium in a safe spot where rain, leaks, or spills won’t get inside of it. The water could cause the plants to begin rotting.
Hang the terrarium or set it on a flat surface. This will depend on the kind of terrarium you have. If you have a hanging terrarium, try tying it to a wall hook, nail, or curtain rod, for instance. Most commercial terrariums come with hanging ropes that can be secured to a hanging point inside your home. If you have a standing terrarium, place it on a flat, stable surface, such as a desk or countertop.[14]
Make sure the terrarium won’t be bumped into or knocked over. Jostling it too much could mix up the base material, inadvertently burying the plants or even breaking the glass.[Edit]Caring for Air Plants
Take the plants out of the terrarium at least once a week. Even though air plants get their nutrients from the air, they still require a little bit of water from time to time. Set aside a day every week for watering. Pull each plant out to avoid introducing too much moisture to the terrarium.[15]
Air plants in hot, dry areas may need to be watered more frequently. Try misting or soaking them 2 to 3 times a week instead.
Check the leaves to see if your plants are getting enough water. The leaves feel full and stiff when they are healthy. They turn soft, light, or even wrinkly when they need more water.
Soak the plants in a bowl of cold water for up to 30 minutes. Fill a bowl with water, then submerge the plants. It may sound weird, but the bath doesn’t harm them. Just remember to take them out when the time is up![16]If you don’t have time to soak the plants, fill a spray bottle instead. Mist the plants thoroughly for about 15 seconds.
To ensure your plants are well-watered, you could soak them for longer once every 2 to 3 weeks. Soak them for 2 hours to ensure they absorb plenty of water.
If you have a flowering air plant, spray it instead of soaking it.
Leave the plants in an open area to air dry for 4 hours. Give each plant a gentle shake to remove excess moisture. Then, set it in a spot with good air circulation. Keep the plants out of direct sunlight while they dry. When they’re done drying, move them back to the terrarium.[17]Make sure the plants and the terrarium is completely dry. Air plants are soft and prone to rotting from excessive moisture.
You could also blot off the excess moisture with a paper towel. Doing this is useful if you aren’t able to leave the plant out for long, but try to be as thorough as possible.
Pull the buds off of the plant as they form and grow. Air plants produce new plants called pups. Over time, you may see these new plants coming up from the bottom of the stem. Wait until they are at least ⅓ of the size as the original plant. Then, twist them off by hand to remove them. You can get rid of them or set them in a terrarium so they continue to grow.[18]If you are unable to remove the pups by hand, use a sharp knife to separate them from the original plant. Cut as close to the original plant as possible.
Air plants grow slowly, so you may not notice new growth until 1 to 3 years have passed. Then, the air plant flowers and starts growing a bunch of pups.
Your original air plant will die a few weeks after it flowers, so save a few pups to replace it in your terrarium. Alternatively, you could leave the new growth on the old plant to turn it into a cluster, but you might run out of space in the terrarium.[Edit]Tips
Air plants can also be grown on plastic trays and other containers. Use planters for bigger air plants that won’t fit in a terrarium.
To fertilize air plants, mix a bromeliad fertilizer or liquid plant food into water and spray it on the plant in spring and summer. It isn’t necessary unless your plant is having a hard time surviving or you’re eager to get it to produce new buds.[19]
When mounting an air plant, be very gentle to avoid cutting into it or otherwise causing damage. Air plants can be stapled to mounts for extra security as long as you don’t staple through the fleshy stem.[Edit]Warnings
Copper containers are harmful to air plants. If you’re choosing a terrarium that isn’t glass, make sure it isn’t made with copper.[20][Edit]Things You’ll Need
1 to 3 air plants
Glass terrarium
Coarse sand, pebbles, or another base
Driftwood and other decorative material
Bowl or misting bottle
Hangers and hanging string (optional)[Edit]References↑ https://extension.msstate.edu/blog/how-make-air-plant-terrarium

↑ https://www.bemakeful.com/home/we-love-how-simply-this-diy-air-plant-terrarium-is/

↑ https://pattymacknits.com/diy-air-plant-terrarium/

↑ https://davesgarden.com/guides/articles/using-air-plants-to-create-a-beautiful-low-maintenance-indoor-garden

↑ https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sI7rRc7pbVs&feature=youtu.be&t=81

↑ https://www.diyhowto.org/diy-sand-art-terrarium-ideas-picture-instructions/

↑ https://davesgarden.com/guides/articles/using-air-plants-to-create-a-beautiful-low-maintenance-indoor-garden

↑ https://www.decoist.com/diy-air-plant-terrarium-tropical-style/?adblock=1&chrome=1

↑ https://ecophiles.com/2017/06/12/diy-beginners-guide-creating-terrarium/

↑ https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YqwZ6gpQzgA&feature=youtu.be&t=172

↑ https://garden.org/learn/articles/view/765/

↑ https://airplantsweb.com/do-air-plants-need-sun/

↑ https://hortnews.extension.iastate.edu/2019/12/all-about-air-plants

↑ https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZfiF4lyVLHw&feature=youtu.be&t=64

↑ https://hgic.clemson.edu/factsheet/air-plants/

↑ https://hgic.clemson.edu/factsheet/air-plants/

↑ https://balconygardenweb.com/how-to-water-air-plants-watering-air-plants/

↑ https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-wk9T4Dpo4Y&feature=youtu.be&t=350

↑ http://cloud2.snappages.com/cda3ac1576acc8bcc188afe7f78a9a97a8a96d21/Air%20Plant%20Care%20Instructions.pdf

↑ https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-wk9T4Dpo4Y&feature=youtu.be&t=459

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Today in History for 17th March 2020

Historical Events

1190 – Crusades complete massacre of Jews of York England
1917 – Delta Phi Epsilon is founded at New York University Law School
1950 – Element 98 (Californium) announced
1978 – Reds don green uniforms for St Patricks Day
1979 – Wales beats England, 27-3 at the National Stadium, Cardiff for its 2nd consecutive Five Nations Rugby Championship and record 21st outright title; record 4th straight Triple Crown
2019 – Flash flooding and a landslides kills at least 73 and injures about 60 in Sentani and Jayapura, Papua, eastern Indonesia

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Famous Birthdays

1883 – Urmuz, Romanian writer (d. 1923)
1915 – Henry Bumstead, American art director (d. 2006)
1925 – Jerome Lejeune, physiologist
1944 – John Sebastian, American singer (Loving Spoonful, Welcome Back Kotter), born in NYC, New York
1947 – Yury Chernavsky, Russian-born Composer and Producer
1964 – Jacques Songo’o, Cameroonian footballer

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Famous Deaths

1891 – Napoléon Bonaparte, French prince and member National Convention, dies at 68
1953 – Conrado del Campo y Zabaleta, composer, dies at 73
1988 – Nikolas Asimos, Greek counter-culture composer and singer, dies at 38
1994 – Arthur C. Jacobs, Scottish poet, dies at 57
1994 – Mai Zetterling, Swedish actress and film director (Witches, Offbeat, Jet Storm), dies of cancer at 68
2016 – Paul Daniels, British magician (The Paul Daniels Magic Show), dies at 77

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How to Paint Gold

When you want to replicate gold objects in paintings, mix different colors together to simulate the highlights, base color, and shadows of the gold. Blend them together using different gradients to imitate the way light would reflect off of the object. If you’re wondering about painting on top of real gold, you can paint over gold leaf with acrylic or oil paints after it has been applied to a variety of surfaces including canvas, paper, and even furniture. If you want to paint common household items gold, try spray painting them.

[Edit]Steps
[Edit]Replicating Gold Objects in Paintings
Put yellow, dark red, reddish-brown, black, and white paints on a palette. Use something like cadmium yellow, crimson or magenta, oxide brown or burnt umber, chromatic black, and true white colors. These will be what you mix together to achieve different shades of gold and mimic the effects of light hitting the object.[1]
The exact color names can vary depending on paint brands.
Paint a black outline of the gold object you want to add to your painting. Use a fine-tipped paintbrush and your black paint to sketch a rough outline of the object on your canvas or paper. Don’t worry about making it too detailed, just sketch the basic shape.[1]
For example, if you want to paint a gold vase, just paint the outline of the overall shape as well as lines that represent any unique features, such as where the vase gets narrower and the metal dips inwards.
Mix together white and yellow paint to apply highlights of the gold first. Stir together equal parts of your cadmium yellow and white paints on your palette. Use a medium-sized paintbrush to apply the paint to areas of the object where there are highlights.[1]
Highlights are wherever the most light would be hitting the object. For instance, if you are painting a gold vase, imagine that the light is shining on it from the left side of the page. The highlights would be on the inside of the lip of the vase at the right side of the page and towards the left side of the outside of the vase.
Keep in mind that gold is very reflective and thus has very strong highlights. The brightest parts of the highlights can appear almost white.[1]
Combine your reddish-brown and yellow paints to fill in the base gold color. Mix together your cadmium yellow and burnt umber or oxide brown paints in equal parts and adjust the mixture until you like the gold color. Use a medium-sized paintbrush to fill in the object you are painting around the areas you applied highlights to.[1]
You can paint over the highlighted areas to adjust them and blend them in. Make the areas closest to the highlights lighter and the areas further away from the highlights darker.
Add black and dark red to the base gold color mixture and paint in shadows. Stir a tiny bit of black into the mixture of yellow and brown on your palette to darken it, then stir in a tiny bit of the magenta or crimson to make it warmer. Use this to paint shadows on the areas of the object where the light doesn’t hit.[1]
For example, if you are painting a gold vase with the light coming from the left side of your canvas or paper, paint shadows on the far right side of the outside of the vase and on the inside of the left side of the lip.
If you look at shadows on a real gold object, you will notice they are often almost red in color. You can adjust your paint mixture to make it redder as you see fit to make the shadows warmer and more realistic looking.[1]
Work on blending the colors in to replicate the effect of light on the gold. Adjust the mixes you made for the highlights, the base gold color, and the shadows by changing the ratios of the paints to make them darker and lighter. Blend the areas between the highlights, regular gold, and shadows using different gradients of color to mimic how gold looks when light is shining on it.[1]
It helps to look at a picture of a gold object or have a real gold object in front of you while you do this so you can see how the light reflects off of it and creates different hues. Try your best to imitate these effects.[Edit]Painting on Top of Gold Leaf
Avoid touching gold leaf that is less than 22 karats with bare fingers. Gold leaf with a purity of less than 22 karats or imitation gold leaf will oxidize if it is exposed to the oils on your bare fingers. Wear latex gloves if you must touch the gold leaf for any reason.[1]
The only easy way to tell what purity gold leaf is would be to check the manufacturer’s information on the packaging. If you aren’t the person who applied the gold leaf and you don’t have the packaging available, it is safest to just not touch it.
Fingerprints will continue oxidizing even after gold leaf is sealed with a protective coating, so it’s very important to avoid touching it.
If you don’t know how pure the gold leaf is, avoid touching it to be safe.
Seal gold leaf with solvent-based varnish before painting if it is under 22 karats. Apply 2-3 coats of mineral spirit acrylic (MSA) varnish with a paintbrush, spray on 2-3 coats of archival MSA varnish, or apply any other type of solvent-based varnish. Work in long, even strokes with the brush or spray can to evenly coat the gold leaf.[1]
The coats of varnish will protect the gold leaf from oxidation since most acrylic paints contain ammonia in their formulas, which oxidizes gold leaf.
Don’t use a polymer-based varnish to seal the gold leaf as this also contains ammonia that will oxidize it.
Paint directly on top of high-purity gold leaf that is 22-24 karats. Real gold leaf of high-purity doesn’t need to be sealed before painting. Pure gold won’t oxidize for any reason.[1]
You can also safely handle high-purity gold leaf without gloves.
Apply acrylic paint opaquely or transparently over gold leaf for different effects. Paint using a paintbrush and an acrylic paint of your choice as is or water it down to create transparent washes. Leave some areas of gold unpainted, some completely covered, and some partially showing through transparent layers to combine the gold leaf with the paint in different ways.[1]
It’s completely up to you how you want to use acrylic paint on top of the gold leaf. Experiment with different techniques to create different effects and achieve the look you want.
Paint with oil on top of gold leaf if you want rich colors. Apply oil paint to gold leaf using a paintbrush to create whatever designs you want to. Oil paint colors tend to be brighter and richer than acrylic paint, so it’s a good option when you want to paint very colorful designs.[1]
You can paint on top of gold leaf with oil as if you were painting on canvas or any other surface. The designs and effects you create are totally up to you as the artist.
Add a clear acrylic-based varnish the same day if you used acrylic paint. Acrylic paint usually dries in less than 1 hour and no longer than 2 hours. Apply 1 coat of polymer varnish gloss on top of the dried acrylic paint to protect and preserve it.[1]
Never use this type of acrylic-based varnish as a pre-sealant or on top of oil paint.
Finish oil paintings by applying a coat of solvent-based varnish after 1 month. Wait for 1 month to ensure that the oil paint has fully cured before you seal it. Use a paintbrush to apply 1 coat of MSA varnish, spray on 1 coat of archival MSA varnish, or use any other solvent-based varnish to seal and protect the oil paint.[1]
You can use the same type of varnish you used as a pre-sealant for the final protective coat on top of oil paint.[Edit]Things You’ll Need
[Edit]Replicating Gold Objects in Paintings
Palette
Fine-tipped paintbrush
Medium-sized paintbrush
Yellow, dark red, reddish-brown, black, and white paints[Edit]Painting on Top of Gold Leaf
Latex gloves (optional)
Paintbrush
MSA varnish or archival MSA varnish
Acrylic paint
Oil paint
Polymer varnish
MSA varnish or archival MSA varnish
Paintbrush[Edit]References↑ https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-JXvE444HZw&feature=youtu.be&t=45

↑ https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-JXvE444HZw&feature=youtu.be&t=45

↑ https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-JXvE444HZw&feature=youtu.be&t=45

↑ https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-JXvE444HZw&feature=youtu.be&t=45

↑ https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-JXvE444HZw&feature=youtu.be&t=45

↑ https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-JXvE444HZw&feature=youtu.be&t=45

↑ https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-JXvE444HZw&feature=youtu.be&t=45

↑ https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-JXvE444HZw&feature=youtu.be&t=45

↑ https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-JXvE444HZw&feature=youtu.be&t=45

↑ https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-JXvE444HZw&feature=youtu.be&t=45

↑ https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-JXvE444HZw&feature=youtu.be&t=45

↑ https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-JXvE444HZw&feature=youtu.be&t=45

↑ https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-JXvE444HZw&feature=youtu.be&t=45

↑ https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-JXvE444HZw&feature=youtu.be&t=45

↑ https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-JXvE444HZw&feature=youtu.be&t=45

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