In this article we will be covering reasons as to why the plants in your terrarium wither. This is crucial when it comes to maintaining your terrarium. The best way to tell if you are maintaining it the properly is to observe your plant closely. Of all the various signs, one of the most crucial signs of an unkempt terrarium is withering plants.
Thus in this article we will list the reasons as to why the plants in your terrarium may be withering:
1. Insufficient or Excess water
Plants make food via a process called photosynthesis. Apart from carbon dioxide and sunlight, plants also require water to photosynthesize. However, too little water and the plant will starve & wither, too much and its roots might rot.
The optimal amount of water varies depending on the type of plant you are using. For instance as compared to fittonias, succulents and cacti do not require large amounts of water to thrive (in fact, do allow the soil to dry off sufficiently in between watering intervals).
2. Temperature & humidity
For closed terrariums, the internal temperatures are already hotter than that of the external environment. Thus do pay extra attention to where you choose to store your terrarium – keep it away from locations with a higher than average temperature. Common examples of such locations are kitchens and computer CPUs. A rule of thumb is to water it more often in hot & dry locations and less if you are situated in a climate with low temperatures and high humidity levels.
Especially for closed terrariums, excessive watering will lead to the formation of mould. In order to remove it, simply wipe it off using a piece of cloth. If the mould forms between the soil and glass walls of the terrarium, it will be tougher to remove it. But that is alright because mould is generally harmless.
4. Insufficient excessive light exposure
Certain types of plant varieties (e.g. Fittonia plants aka nerve plants) are sensitive to direct sunlight. So do remember to keep them under indirect sunlight or artificial lighting.
5. Fertilizer mixture
Using the wrong fertilizer mix can also be detrimental to your plants. Some fertilizer mixes are more acidic than the others whereas others are more alkalinic than some. For instance, cacti thrives well in slightly acidic soil (PH 5 – 6.5) whereas fittonia plants cannot survive in acidic soil.
Follow the aforementioned steps closely for a mould free terrarium.
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!