Growing Plants

How To Grow Herbs In Terrarium: A Complete Guide

Growing herbs in terrarium allows you to build your favorite and beautiful indoor garden. Besides, you may control the water amount for each herb and give them proper care without hassle.

Also, a good terrarium will support the herbs with the ideal and favorable environment to boost their growth indoors.

But indoor cultivation is more demanding and is not something first-timers can master. Keep reading this article to learn more about the complete process to do this successfully.

How To Grow Herbs In Terrarium?

herbs in terrarium

Choose the proper terrarium and clean it. Then, design your terrarium on paper before creating coarse sand and adding a thin sphagnum moss layer.

After filling the terrarium with soil, grow herbs, pour water slowly, and cover it with a lid.

Select a Big Glass Container for Terrarium

You can cultivate the herbs you like by using a glass container big enough to accommodate all your plants.

Make sure that the container will give about three to five inches around and above the mature plant when it fully grows.

Besides, choosing a big glass container to make a terrarium will give vital ventilation to your herbs.

Clean the Terrarium

After choosing a suitable terrarium for herbs, rinse the glass container with its lid by using a mixture including one part of water and two parts of vinegar.

Once you clean the glass container completely, wait until it becomes dry and ready to use.

Plan your Terrarium’s Layout or Design 

You should create the design or layout for your herb terrarium on paper first. Adding decorative elements to your terrarium, including pebbles, driftwood, and stones, is better.

It’s generally easy to make a simple layout or design for a terrarium by listing the herbs you plan to grow in the complete terrarium first.

Then, you need to consider where you want to display your terrarium.

A tall plant should stand in the center if you want the fauna inside the container to be observable from various directions. 

Should you only display the front side, you can grow tall herbs or a mixture of other plants on the back and layer shorter herbs in the center and front.

Create Coarse Sand Layer At the Terrarium’s Bottom 

In this step, you will spread a thin layer of coarse sand or small pebbles (say, 1/4 – 1/2 inch) at the container’s bottom.

Adding a coarse material layer to the terrarium bottom helps provide proper drainage and keeps the soil healthy with balanced moisture.

Add a Thin Sphagnum Moss Layer on the Sand’s Top

Place a 1/4-inch sphagnum moss layer on top of sand or pebbles. This is because the sphagnum moss will form a porous layer allowing moisture to absorb better and help keep the soil healthy.

Also, it makes the soil acidic.

Fill the Terrarium With Potting Soil to the Halfway Point

Fill half of the terrarium with organic potting soil; this soil works best and safest to grow herbs for human consumption.

Yet, you may use a garden soil type that does not contain chemical fertilizers to replace the organic soil type.

Moisten the Soil to Prepare It for Growing

Prepare the soil for growing herbs by moistening and compacting it. You can use a spray bottle to help maintain an even surface and keep the soil from getting wet.

Grow Herbs In the Terrarium

You continue growing plants in a terrarium based on your layout or design. Plant each herb deep enough to allow the planting mixture to keep herbs securely upright.

Hand stroke the planting mixture for each plant. Choose any decorations you like to add to your terrarium, but don’t overstuff your herbs.

Doing so will obstruct the air circulation, which wreaks havoc on your plants.

Pour Filtered Water Slowly Down

Slowly pour the filtered water inside the herb terrarium to let the sphagnum moss soak in.

Yet, don’t overwater, as this can harm your herbs, such as creating favorable conditions for bacteria, mold, or potential diseases to thrive.

Cover the Terrarium With a Lid

Use a lid to cover the herb terrarium and place it in a position with direct sunlight throughout the day.

How To Care For Herbs Properly? 

growing plants in a terrarium

Though mostly being planted indoors, most herb plants that grow in terrariums prefer the direct sun, so they thrive best in full sun.

Thus, grow your terrarium in a location that enables them to receive direct sunlight for about 6-8 hours daily to keep the herbs alive.

Besides, apply well-drained soil to most herbs to help them grow healthily and yield the best flavor.

Also, watering requires careful implementation regarding each soil type, environment, climate conditions, and cultivar.

Note that herbs will need more water in hot, windy, low-humidity environments than in humid, cloudy, and cool climates.

Give it to the extent that the root gets wet with a depth of 6 inches or more while watering. A drip irrigation or soaker hoses system is an effective watering method.

Apply to only the plants’ roots to avoid wasting water and keep the leaves dry to prevent disease growth.

If herbs get excessive nutrients, they will grow poorly with little taste or aroma. Thus, avoid over-fertilizing to help them flourish.

Slow-degrading organic fertilizers and slow-release fertilizers are suitable for herbs. Test soil according to label instructions.


terrarium for herbs

How Can I Plant Herbs From Seeds?

  1. Prepare seeds, soil, add water, and mix them to make a damp mixture. Use the potting soil and fill it into the pot for about 3/4 to the rim.

Also, you may add the extra seeds instead of applying the recommended seed quantities, as not all of them will successfully germinate.

  1. Cover the herb seeds with the additional potting soil and blot gently. Seeds require moisture, so the soil needs to be moist. It’s best to use plastic wrap to cover each pot or place them in a seedling tray and use a dome to cover them.
  2. Leave the cover on until the herb seeds germinate, then remove the plastic dome or wrap.
  3. Put the seedling in the location with sunlight or grow light.
  4. Once the seedlings appear with real leaves, transplant them to each pot.

What Herbs Can You Grow In a Terrarium?

Most herbs are ideal as houseplants that grow well in a terrarium. Yet, you can choose some typical herb varieties with distinct colors, tastes, and sizes to plant in a terrarium.

You may refer to a list of herbs popular to thrive in a terrarium, including parsley, cilantro, basil,  sage, mint, chives, oregano,  thyme, and dill.

Besides, add several herb types that may thrive well in a terrarium with proper care to diversify your mini “ecosystem.” 

How to Build a DIY Indoor Herb Garden?

Building a DIY herb garden indoors is a simple process, but you need to follow the details below to have a perfect and creative herb garden as desired.

First, choose the right herb types you want to plant in your DIY garden indoors. You can select the best type based on its taste and survival capability in indoor environments.

Besides, opt for tidy herb varieties. The herbs that look compact will help your house, rooms, and kitchen window become neater when you plant them indoors.

I chose herb types, including Globette basil, Fernleaf dill, Blue Boy rosemary, English mint, Spicy Globe, and Kaliteri oregano, to grow in my indoor garden.

They are tidy and great for my house without occupying too much area.

Second, choose boxes or containers to build indoor herb garden with ornamental elements. It is also ideal to set up planting boxes inside your house’s window or on your windowsill.

Aside from installing window boxes, you may look for and choose a glass container big enough to make a terrarium for growing your herbs and create a DIY herb garden indoors.


The above is an ultimate guide on growing herbs in terrarium with detailed steps, from building a good terrarium, adding layers, filling potting soil, planting herbs, watering, and caring for them properly.

You may make a DIY terrarium full of seasonal, fragrant, and fresh herbs by choosing simple materials with minimal time.

Besides, the best method to create an ideal garden with healthy, long-lasting, and lush herbs indoors is to choose the right herb type, install the proper space, and understand the vital needs of the herbs you want to plant, be it parsley, thyme, basil or any your desired herbs.

Samuel Mark

Hello I am Samuel. Samuel's Garden is a garden blog where I share my experiences in garden caring and tree growth. Hope you enjoy it!

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