Ever since I read Adrian Higgins’ article in The Washington Post a few weeks back (actually 2/19/09) about the crazy comeback that terrariums are making, I’ve been a woman driven. I’ve been thinking about them too often and have been wondering how we can make one of our own. I’ve visited our local thrift shop for supplies twice, only to realize that what I needed was already under our roof, thanks to Peepers and Pappy and the good folks at Freecycle last spring (which, my friends, is a story for another time. . . ).
Anyway, we ran some errands today, as our whole area is bracing for a winter storm, and, while shopping, I found a great deal on seeds, a 72-plant seed starter, and a 12-pack of those biodegradable pots that you can plant right into the ground once your plants get a good start indoors. And the best part of it is that while we were there, I remembered that the huge aquarium that we got for free last spring would be perfect, perfect, perfect in another life as a terrarium!
- Terrarium Building: We picked out seeds–some flowers, some veggies, some herbs. Then, once we got home, we prepared the pads in the big starter, threw some dirt in the pots, and we got planting. We did this on the kitchen floor, which, consequently, still needed a good scrubbing (when will it not?).
Maddy and Owen had a blast pushing tiny holes in the dirt and sticking any size seeds in them; Cora had an easier time with big nasturtium seeds. I usually dumped a few onto a white paper plate to make them more visible, then they would grab a 2 or 3 and go. I tried to keep track of which seeds went where, but I’m sure there will be some surprises as they begin to grow.
Once we were finished planting, we put the cover on the big guy and placed the pots in rows in the aquarium-terrarium. I know it’s not a terrarium by definition, but once things start growing, it will kind of look like one, and, like dinosaur names, my kiddos have liked hearing ‘terrarium’ come out of their mouths tonight.
Children are fascinated by the process by which plants grow, and although we most likely won’t get into the whole photosynthesis-thing with Maddy, Owen, and Cora now, I’m sure that they will be intrigued by watching their little seeds go from packet, to planter, to outside garden, to our table (hopefully!) come summer. This little bit of daily learning will at least bring a little spring into our winter-gray house . . .