Why do Open Terrariums Require More Maintenance than Closed Terrariums?

A terrarium is a miniature self-sustaining garden enclosed in a bottle. Terrariums can be classified mainly into 2 different types – Closed and open terrariums. Both of which require different levels of maintenance.

Before we move on to discuss about the differences between the 2 types of terrariums, let us first do a short recap about the differences between close and open terrariums.

What are Closed and Open Terrariums 

  1. Closed terrariums are terrariums without any opening. They are entirely sealed up.
  2. Open terrariums are terrariums with an opening.
IMG 0313 e1453880002141 scaled | Ecoponics Singapore | June, 2024
EcoPonics Closed Terrarium
EcoPonics Open Terrarium 3 | Ecoponics Singapore | June, 2024
EcoPonics Open Terrarium









Differences in the Gaseous Exchange, Water Cycle and Ecosystem Between Closed and Open Terrariums 

That being said, the natural processes that occur in nature, that are vital for the survival of plants occurs within the terrarium itself. For closed terrariums, it is important to note that the ecosystem within the terrarium is isolated from the external environment. Whereas for open terrariums, the terrarium ecosystem is connected to the external environment.

during the day plants photosynthesise and respire

Source: Gaseous exchange involving photosynthesis and respiration

This means that the ecosystem for closed terrariums have their very own state of equilibrium. And is entirely isolated from the external environment (e.g. humidity, etc). For instance, it doesn’t matter if the external environment humidity level is high or low, for close terrariums, the water content within the atmosphere of the terrarium is independent of that of the outer environment.

Reasons Why Open Terrariums Have Higher Levels of Maintenance as Compared to Closed Terrariums 

Because open terrariums are exposed to the external environment, they are susceptible to moisture loss and as such have to be watered more frequently as compared to closed terrariums with an internal water cycle.

wood plant green | Ecoponics Singapore | June, 2024

Interested in designing and making your very own terrarium? We at Ecoponics conduct regular individual and group terrarium workshops for both corporates and schools. Come participate in our terrarium workshops!


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