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Terrariums Bring Exotic Flora Indoors

Nov 5, 2007
Many parts of the world are known for exotic plant life. Conditions must be right for many species of plants to thrive and survive. From the rainforests of South America to the South Pacific, beauty abounds thanks to Mother Natures ability to create just the right environment. Even desert climates offer a wide variety of plant life that require little moisture but survive in ecosystems no less delicate and fragile than those found more lush climates.

Terrariums allow us to maintain a wide variety of growing conditions for plants that can add extraordinary beauty and a sense of serenity or the home or office. Using the proper materials and with the right choice of plants you can transform any living space into a source of pride and natural splendor. Just like aquariums and other indoor habitats, proper care of a terrarium does require a certain amount of discipline and attention to detail. Once established, the effort may well prove worth it.

In order to create the proper growing conditions for your terrarium, there are several key elements, all of which must be considered for your habitat to be a welcome environment for type of plants you select. Whether you choose lush greenery or a dry desert setting, the size of your terrarium is probably the most important consideration. The good news is that no matter what size you choose, the step up of the growing space is roughly the same though larger terrariums will require slightly more maintenance.

The size of your terrarium can range from a desktop bowl to an ornate, free standing tank and all sizes in between. Once you have settled on the size, the selection of plants will determine the type of growing conditions you must create. As with all living things, light and moisture are critical considerations when establishing the right growing conditions. Many desktop displays can be maintained utilizing existing room light while others may require the addition of full spectrum lighting. Larger terrariums almost always necessitate specialized lighting conditions that can add to the initial cost.

The proper lighting not only serves to help the plants grow as they should, but lighting can be used to control such variables as temperature and moisture. The more complex the terrarium, the more attention must be paid to heat and light. Just as with aquariums, auxiliary heating systems may be needed. The ambient room conditions can also play a big part here. Homes in colder northern climates that need to be heated in winter can experience drastic changes in the amount of humidity in the room air.

Most modern heating systems dry the room air and this will in turn affect the conditions in your terrarium. Conversely, when air conditioning is used in hot and humid climates, the room air can be drier. Your air conditioner works by removing moisture from the air and cooling the living space.

Plant selection will also affect the type of soil you will need to use and drainage is another key factor. Anyone who has tried to grow the average house plant knows the difficulty of maintaining the right moisture balance for the type of plant you are trying to grow. The right combination of soil and drainage can make maintaining your terrarium easier.

Over-planting the growing space is a common mistake that should be avoided. Different plant species grow at varied rates and slower growing plants can be crowded out by their faster-growing neighbors.

There are numerous resources available that allow the plant enthusiast access to the information needed to create a welcome growing space. People of all ages can learn much about the vast range of ecosystems and plant life on this beautiful planet and terrariums can bring this diversity into your home or office.
About the Author
Michael O'Brien is a writer for the popular
terrarium site:
TerrariumSale.com. He provides information on how to build a terrarium, terrarium plants and glass terrariums.
His website,www.TerrariumSale.com
also has information on reptile terrariums, frog terrariums and lizard terrariums.
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