Learn to grow and care for plants by making a
terrarium. It is a little garden sealed in a glass container. Rich
soil and moisture inside the jar make the garden grow quickly. In
planting your garden, use wild ferns, violets, moss, and small
cuttings of ivy or any houseplant that will grow in
- A clear, wide-mouth 1-gallon glass
jar and lid (ask at your neighborhood grocery, restaurant, or
delicatessen for an empty pickle jar.)
- Sand or bird gravel
piece of burned wood or some charcoal
- About 2 cups of rich garden
- Plywood, 12" x 8"
- Strips of wood 1/2"
thick and 1" wide
- Thin brads or nails
- Hammer, saw &
- Paint or stain, if desired
- Variety of small
Build the base for the garden
- Five pieces of wood are used to make the base.
The base measures 12"x 8". Set up as a rectangle the
smaller pieces of wood, squaring it on the on the base. This is
where your jar will fit. Two of the pieces are 6" long and
the others are 5" long. Nail these to the base, sand the
inside of this rectangular to make the jar fit snugly within
- Place the jar, thoroughly clean, on its side on the
- Put a 1/2" layer of sand or bird gravel
in the bottom of the jar as it lies on its side.
- Crush a
piece of charcoal o r burned wood between newspapers and
sprinkle a layer of charcoal over the sand.
- Add a layer of
rich dirt. The garden can be higher at the backside of the jar,
but be sure the dirt is smoothed away from the mouth of the jar
so that it will not spill out.
- Set your plants at least an
inch deep in the soil.
- Spay the garden with water. Do not
get dirt to wet.
- Seal the jar with the lid and set the
tiny greenhouse in a spot where it will get some sunlight each
- Watch the garden carefully for a day or two. If it
appears to be too wet, take off the jar lid for a day or more
until the garden dries some.
- The garden will grow for 2
or 3 months without having to be opened.
Foam Tray Raft
- Plastic Foam trays
(meat or produce trays)
- Rubber cement or waterproof
- Craft glue
- Thread spool
- Colored Paper
- Pint milk
cartons or Tops of plastic bottles
- Latex or acrylic
- To make each raft, use two
identical foam trays. Invert one tray and use rubber cement to glue
the edges of the two trays together. You could tape the trays
together instead, but be sure to use a waterproof tape so as to
prevent any naval disaster.
- . On the balloon raft, inflate and
insert the neck of the balloon in a small hole in the top tray
before gluing the trays together. Make a toothpick railing, simply
inserting toothpicks into the tray for vertical posts. Use thick
craft glue to attach toothpicks for the horizontal top on the
- For a paper sail raft, insert a pencil for the mast
into a thread spool. Then use rubber cement to glue the spool to the
raft. Cut a sail from colored paper and insert the mast through
- For shelters on the raft, use either pint milk cartons or
the tops of plastic bottles. For the milk carton shelter, paint the
carton with latex or acrylic paint. Glue on a colored paper roof
over the peaked top of the carton. Cut doors and windows in the
shelters; add any decorations you want.