Terrarium Care

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Terrarium Care

Do I need to water my Terrarium?

No! When we build our terrariums we balance the moisture levels over a period of several weeks, adding or removing just the right amount of moisture to ensure your new terrarium is settled, established and ready to go home with you. When the temperature changes, the water in the soil will evaporate and get caught under the lid of the terrarium creating condensation. Through the day this condensation will drop back down into the soil – creating a closed cycle, recycling the same water over and over.

Really? Never?!

Okay – you got us. You should check that your terrarium is forming a very light condensation every day. If you see that it is not doing this for a few days it may need a spray or two (a very small amount) of water. Having said this - our terrariums are closed systems and will do just fine for months on end with no water - so long as their lids remain on. Also, try to always use distilled water or tap water that has been left to sit overnight (to allow the chlorine to settle) - whilst not too much of a problem initially, the chlorine in tap water can cause minor problems if used over time.

What happens if I take the lid off?

If you want to take the lid of just for a peek inside, that is totally fine! Just replace it when you’re done. We recommend with our larger terrariums that you remove the lid once a week, if you remember, for about 10 minutes – but it’s really no drama if you forget! Our oldest terrarium is over two years old, and we have quite literally never opened it or watered it since it's creation.

Do Plants need sunlight? 

Yes. All our terrariums are made with living plant-life, so they do need natural light through the day. 50% - 80% ambient light is best - NO direct sunlight – especially in the warmer months. Terrariums don’t like blaring sun, or no natural light at all. Sunlight is the most important part of your job in keeping your terrarium happy! The 'sweet spot' for ambient light is often two to four feet back from any direct sunlight.

Will the plants get too big for my terrarium? 

Plants adapt to their environment, and almost all the plants we use are grown especially for terrariums. In this way, they are all very slow growing, requiring very little maintenance if any at all. If you do notice that the plant has begun to push against the glass walls of your terrarium, you can use a pair of scissors to trim off this part. If you enjoy the aesthetic of plants against the glass, then don't worry! As your terrarium vessel is a closed system and filled with living things, be sure to remove any dead plant matter as soon as you spot it to avoid mould. 

Can I leave my Plant alone when I go on holiday?

Our Tiny, Standard and Oasis plants should be totally fine on their own for up to a couple of months! Even our spherical range may do okay, if left in the right sunlight over the time. Get in touch if you want to know how your Plant would do independently - positioning over time is key to their longevity! 

What is in my Plant by Packwood terrarium? 

The layers in your Plant from the bottom up are: pebbles (for drainage), wet sphagnum moss (for water retention), horticultural charcoal (to filter and clean water and suppress odours) and our own mix of soil. Atop the soil we place minerals for ornamentation, and sometimes forest moss. The Plants used in your terrarium depend on what you or we have chosen for that specific design.

Is my Plant by Packwood unique? 

Yes! Apart from the fact that every plant grows differently – so yours will never quite be like another – when Bayden builds each terrarium the design is slightly different even in our smaller Lunar range. Look at the terrain of the soil, the pebble, river stone and moss placement, the way the plants have been placed in the landscape… All of this is unique to your terrarium.

What if my Plant dies?

We certainly hope this doesn’t happen! If you notice within the first month of bringing your Plant home that it looks a bit unhappy get in touch right away with photos. We should be able to figure out the root of the problem and fix it for you. If you get in touch after this one month “settling” period, we may charge you for replacement plants and our time in order to fix your terrarium up for you. We will always do our very best to ensure the longevity of your terrarium. 

The moss in my terrarium has turned yellow - what is happening?

Just as more complex plants change with the seasons in nature, so too does moss. You may find that as the weather warms up or cools down, the moss will turn different shades to reflect the very subtle changes in temperate - even inside the closed system of a terrarium. Apart from this, the most common cause of yellowing or dying mosses is overwatering. If you notice any dying moss, remove the lid of your terrarium for half an hour and then replace. Do not add any extra water via misting - monitor your moss for a few days first to see if the fresh air has helped. if you are worried about your moss we offer a re-mossing service. Just send us through an e-mail with a picture of your terrarium and we can go from there.

I've discovered mould in my terrarium! What do I do?

Don't panic! As long as you've noticed this early, your Plant is probably going to be okay! First of all, your Plant may not be getting enough sunlight - this is the most common reason for terrariums developing mould. Consider moving it to a brighter area. You can treat the mould by removing it with a cotton bud dipped in a solution of 1 part white vinegar to 4 parts water, and then leaving the lid off for a day allowing the affected area to dry out fully. Before replacing the lid, spray some water into the terrarium (one or two mists should do the trick). If for whatever reason your terrarium has mould spread throughout the soil / around the bases of the plants, return the terrarium to us and we will do our best to save it.

I've discovered BUGS in my terrarium! What do I do?

If you've found tiny flies in your terrarium your soil may have contained some secret fungus gnats when we assembled it. Congratulations! You win the prize! But in all seriousness, these little critters are pretty harmless to your terrarium if dealt with early enough. You may even find that they will just die out naturally. If you'd like to speed the process up, treat your terrarium with Pyrethrum, a natural insecticide available from most nurseries. Just a couple of misted spray or two should do the trick!

Store and Shipping Info

Can Plant by Packwood ship interstate?

We are occasionally able to ship small houseplants interstate, however unfortunately we are unable to send terrariums outside Melbourne. The best way to get a Plant by Packwood terrarium interstate is by taking it as hand luggage on a plane! We have had customers successfully carry up to the Playground Plant sized terrarium as hand luggage up to Sydney and Brisbane. 

Can Plant by Packwood ship internationally?

Unfortunately we are unable to send any of our products internationally. Follow us on Instagram instead - it's the next best thing!

How do I find your shop?!

The Plant by Packwood store is super well hidden! As you are walking along Rose Street you will reach number 60 which is the yummy Young Bloods Diner cafe, next door to the cafe is a big driveway you can walk into. We are directly behind the wall along the street, you have to turn back to the street to see us!