DIY Moss Terrarium Craft

This DIY kid-friendly moss terrarium is a wonderful little craft to do with your child in celebration of earth day, or any day!

DIY Terrarium

What is a terrarium? Well, a terrarium is a collection of small plants growing a controlled environment, often a small, clear, sealed container. In the photo below, you can see the materials you’ll need for the project, and you can find a complete list at the bottom of the post.

Because a terrarium is a closed environment, it’s a great way to illustrate for children how an ecosystem works. Your child can observe many interesting natural processes through the thin glass walls of his or her terrarium, including: photosynthesis, respiration, and the water cycle.

Of course, half the fun in making a moss terrarium is having the opportunity to take a nature-walk with your child. You’ll love this opportunity to explore the great outdoors, and it will give you an opportunity to reiterate to your child the importance of preserving nature’s beauty.

Terrarium Craft

We chose to recycle a jar that used to contain a candle. You could use any glass container with thin walls, the thinner the walls the better you’ll be able to see what’s inside your terrarium.

Pickle jars or sauce jars work great too!

Once you’ve chosen your terrarium container, you’ll want to be sure it is clean and dry. Then, begin the layering process by letting your child spoon a 1″ layer of small pebbles into the container to create a false drainage system.

Easy Moss Terrarium

Next, is a layer of activated charcoal, which you can find in pet stores. The activated charcoal helps keep the water clean and free of mold and bacteria.

Kid-Friendly Moss Terrarium

Now, add a layer of soil. After researching terrariums, it seems that using garden soil is not recommended. We didn’t have any potting soil, so we sourced ours from the yard. One of the main concerns is insects, but honestly, I’m not concerned with the insects in 1 cup of soil from my yard.

You might want to build your terrarium with potting soil, I’ll let you know how ours fares with the garden soil!

Moss Terrarium Jar

I said I wasn’t concerned with bugs, right? Not so sure about worms! One earthworm did managed to stow away in the moss. Evan enjoyed observing him, then later, we returned the worm to our garden.

Glass Jar Terrarium

You can use a bamboo skewer to round out pits for your plants. Arrange by placing the larger/taller plants near the back, and work your way toward the front wall of your terrarium.

Moss Terrariums

We used some rocks found in our creek to decorate as well.

Moss Terrarium Photo

It’s always fun to let your children put their fingers in the dirt, get a little messy, and best of all—explore our beautiful, natural world.

Earth-friendly play and earth-friendly clean-up

When the playing is done, you can scrub those little fingers with earth-friendly Mrs. Meyer’s Liquid Hand Soap (we love the crisp and sweet Apple scent), which is made from plant-derived ingredients, and doesn’t contain anything harmful like chlorine bleach, ammonia, parabens and phosphates. In fact, Mrs. Meyer’s fully discloses their complete ingredients list on their label, and as a parent, I really respect and appreciate that.

Mrs. Meyer’s also uses 25% post-consumer resin in recyclable bottles, and their products — ranging from Liquid Dish soap to Laundry Detergent — are never tested on animals.

Kids DIY Terrarium Craft

And that’s it! You end up with a super cute little terrarium! You can find a printable version of the materials list and instructions below.

Happy earth day and happy terrarium-making!

DIY Kid-Friendly Moss Terrarium


Glass container

Small pebbles

Activated charcoal

Potting soil

Moss or other small plants

Bamboo skewer

Optional larger rocks for decoration


1. Choose an open or closed top glass container. Old pickle or sauce jars work great.

2. Create a false drainage system for the plant roots by adding a 1-inch thick layer of small pebbles.

3. Add a thin layer of activated charcoal. You can purchase this at a pet store. The charcoal will help keep the water fresh and will help prevent mold and bacteria build-up.

4. Add a layer of soil. You can use potting soil, we used soil from our yard.

5. Place your plants in the terrarium. Use a bamboo skewer to make small holes, and place different types of moss in the jar, starting with larger plants near the back. We used a few nice rocks for decoration.

This is a sponsored post on behalf of Mrs. Meyer’s. Opinions are my own.

Crissy Page

Hi, I'm Crissy, the founder and editor of Parent Pretty. I'm a 30-something mom from Ohio who loves photography, my two beautiful children, and Diet Coke. You might recognize me from my main blog, Dear Crissy. You can also find me on Twitter @Crissy.

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