Create an Air Plant Terrarium

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©2015 Madeloni Photography

Air plants are unique – they don’t need soil to grow, just air and a little water. Also called epiphytic plants, air plants grow in the wild on tree branches and other structures and rely on rainfall and moist air to stay alive. When people think of air plants, they’re often thinking of the most common variety—tillandsias. But air plants come in different shapes and sizes, some flowering and some not, and they include some types of orchids, bromeliads, mosses, lichens, and ferns.

To create an air plant terrarium, start by choosing a container: a terrarium, pot, vase, jar, seashell, whatever you’d like! Add some decor to your air plant’s container and voila! You have yourself an indoor landscape. You can add almost anything else to this miniature habitat: rocks, sea shells, coral, statues. Hanging an air plant terrarium is a great way to bring small spaces to life.

Lightly mist your air plant using a spray bottle once every couple of days. Every couple weeks, remove the air plant from the terrarium and submerge it in a water bath for 2-3 hours. After removing them from the bath, shake them dry and return them to the terrarium. About once a month, add a half-strength dose of orchid fertilizer to the water bath.

Air plants do best indoors in medium to bright indirect light. They will do well in steamy environments like bathrooms, but the steam is not enough to keep the plant sufficiently hydrated.

Air plants can also be planted outdoors in rock beds or containers.

Materials List:

  1. Air plant
  2. Glass terrarium or container
  3. Rocks or other decor
  4. Spray bottle
  5. Orchid fertilizer
  6. Rope or ribbon (optional)


  1. Choose an air plant to fit your container.
  2. Select a terrarium or container for your air plant. They will continue to grow so select one that it can grow into.
  3. Soak the air plant in water to thoroughly water it.
  4. Add any décor you would like to the air plant’s habitat.
  5. Place the air plant in the terrarium or in a rock bed in a location with some
  6. Spray the air plant with 2-3 times a week and soak in a water bath every couple weeks.
  7. Add orchid food (half-strength) to the water bath once a month.
  8. Don’t have a lot of room? Get a hanging terrarium!

Air Plant Terrarium