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Fairy gardens are enjoyed by everyone and can really liven up your existing garden. They also add that magical touch within your home and can act as a great internal display. But before you get started, I have compiled a list of must have supplies that you are going to need when creating your fairy garden.
- Potting Soil
- Small Pebbles or Gravel
- Rocks of Various Sizes
- Gardening Trowel
- Fairy Garden Furniture/Accessories
- Fairy Garden Characters
When creating a fairy garden, the first step is to decide on the type of garden you want to create and what theme it will be founded on. Within this article we expound on each of the key supplies required and how those supplies can be used for different fairy garden ideas/themes. For those of you who love crafts, we have also included some optional supplies that will be useful if creating your own fairy garden accessories.
The best fairy garden container will largely depend on the type of fairy garden you want to create. If you are creating an indoor fairy garden, then a portable container such as a small pot, teacup, small wooden box, or a glass bowl will work well. If your garden is going to be setup outdoors, then it really comes down to the style and size of the garden you choose to create.
Whatever container you choose, make sure there are adequate drainage holes. This is so that the water in the soil can drain freely so sufficient air is available for the roots of your live plants. This will keep your fairy garden looking fresh and alive.
These flower pot containers on Amazon are perfect for a small fairy garden and are great for indoors due to their drainage tray.
Here are some fairy garden container ideas:
- Wooden box
- Glass bowl/terrarium
- Half wine barrel
- Small/large garden bed
- Tree stump
- Tree trunk
- Baby tub
- Fish tank
- Tin bucket
2. Potting Soil
Most regular potting soil mixes are sufficient for small to medium sized fairy gardens. However, there are some key things to look out for that will keep your garden extra fresh and provide greater longevity for your plants.
My personal choice is this Organic Potting Soil on Amazon which can be used for indoor or outdoor fairy gardens.
If the regular potting mix does not contain enough drainage material like vermiculite or perlite, you may need to add a handful or two to your soil mix. This provides better drainage and air circulation for the roots of the plants.
Certain types of plants may require special considerations for your soil. For example, succulents and cacti thrive in dryer conditions and like dry roots whereas spruce or pine prefers to live in damp soil. This information is usually noted on the plant’s tag when purchased, so be sure to make any adjustments necessary when choosing your plants.
Organic potting soil is not a necessity but will provide better results over regular potting soil. If using a tree trunk or outside structure for your garden, peat moss is a great addition to your soil mix as it increases the soil’s ability to hold water and nutrients.
Also, be careful when using soil from your garden bed, as this is not a substitute for potting soil.
3. Small Pebbles or Gravel
Small pebbles or gravel are used to ensure proper drainage and is the first thing you place in your fairy garden container, underneath your soil. This allows for sufficient drainage so your plants can get the air circulation they need to stay healthy and strong.
If your having trouble finding some in your backyard, Amazon has a 5lb bag of small pebbles for a great price!
Small pebbles can also be used to create pathways in your garden or other small rock structures. Glass gems or stones are another great option to create unique landscapes for your fairy friends.
4. Rocks of Various Sizes
Using rocks of various sizes within your garden provides more possibilities to develop your landscape. Larger rocks can be used as an outline for your garden, creating a rock wall or rock fence. You can use various size rocks to build a cave or other types of structures for your fairies to play in. They are also great for stability, to help ground your plants or garden accessories.
Rocks may be the last thing you though to buy online, but Amazon has a great assortment of decorative river rocks that comes with free shipping!
5. Gardening Trowel
A gardening trowel helps you to easily create the necessary holes in your soil to place your plants. They are especially useful when dealing with harder surfaces that may be difficult to just use your hands. As an added bonus, gardening trowels allow you to keep your hands clean while preparing your soil and garden!
This is the trowel I personally use and it has lasted me for years.
When choosing plants for your fairy garden there are a few key things to consider. Your plant choices will depend on the location of your fairy garden, the climate, and your purpose or theme.
What environment will the fairy garden be in? Is your garden going to be placed indoors or outdoors, in a hot, sunny climate or a cold climate? Different plant types have different sun exposure, watering, and maintenance requirements.
See the table below for an example of how some plant types may differ.
For a more detailed guide on plants specific for outdoor use, check out this article discussing outdoor terrariums.
Choose plants that require the same amount of moisture and light. For example, don’t mix desert succulents with tropical plants. For indoor gardens, find plants that thrive in indirect light or shade and don’t require full sun exposure. For outdoor gardens, make sure that your plants don’t get too much direct sun, or they will burn.
Also take into consideration the purpose or theme of your garden. Your landscape will play a key factor in setting the theme and mood of your fairy garden, so you want to make sure that everything fits well together. Make sure to leave room in your mini garden for your other accessories and characters. Finally, if you have children, include them in the process. It teaches them useful skills and helps to create some great memories.
If you are having a hard time deciding, then here is a great assortment of plants you can buy to get you started.
Here is a list of plants that are a good option for fairy gardens:
- Ivy (Not the poison kind)
- Succulents (great for outdoors)
- Licorice plants
- Baby tears (for ground cover)
- Tillandsia (air plants)
- Small bonsai trees
Twigs can be used for multiple things within your fairy garden. You can use them for foliage and spread them around your plants. They are also great for creating your own fairy garden furniture and accessories. Twigs can be used to create houses, swings, paths, and any other structure your imagination can conceive.
If creating your own fairy garden accessories, you will need some of the suggested optional supplies such as a hot glue gun and pruning shears. This wikiHow article is a great step by step guide on how to make fairy garden furniture from twigs.
Flowers can really breathe life into your fairy garden and assist in creating the theme you desire. Think about the types of colors you would like to display and your favorite flowers that make you smile every time you see them. Incorporate the flowers into your garden design and make sure that they fit well with your accessories and fairy characters.
Here are some of my favorite flowers that are great for fairy gardens:
- Tiny Rubies (great for pink ground cover)
- Miniature Daisies (White, yellow center)
- Hawaii Blue (blue)
- Toucan Tango (orange)
- Tiny Violas (purple, yellow)
- Primrose (variety)
- Pot marigold (orange)
- Chinese Lantern (orange)
- Hibiscus (variety)
- Miniature Roses (variety)
Moss is a great addition to any fairy garden as is provides benefits to the soil and is great for landscaping. Using peat moss or a moss mixture pack in combination with your soil, helps to increase your soil’s capacity to hold water and nutrients.
Moss can also be used to cover dirt and create the appearance of grass. It is great to use for making bushes and shrubbery or to drape over your fairy houses for a mystical and enchanting look. If using live moss, make sure to regularly spray your moss with water as moss requires regular watering to remain healthy and grow.
Water is a must have supply for your fairy garden as it is needed to keep your plants healthy. Make sure to understand the watering requirements of your plants and water accordingly. Be sure not to over water, as this can cause root rot and will slowly kill your plants.
Be sure to add some water to your soil before planting your plants to help prepare the soil and make sure your garden has adequate drainage. Water can also be used to create streams or ponds within your garden. Just make sure your garden is big enough and doesn’t become too overcrowded and that you are using small tubs or pans as a support for any water accessory creations.
11. Fairy Garden Furniture/Accessories
Fairy garden furniture and accessories can either be purchased or simply made at home with a few optional supplies. The types of accessories you choose will depend largely on your theme, your garden landscape, and the limitations of your imagination.
You can create your own furniture using twigs and string or a hot glue gun. You can build mini houses or fences with popsicle sticks. If you can think it, you can make it.
If making your own furniture or accessories doesn’t interest you, then there a plenty of places to purchase fairy garden props. Check your local dollar store, Etsy, online distributors, Amazon, Garden/Nursery stores. Make sure to also search for dollhouse accessories as well, as a lot of the time these will work in fairy gardens just fine.
Here are a few accessory ideas to get you started:
- Mini Houses
- Tire Swing
- Watering cans
- Swimming pool
- Fairy lights
12. Fairy Garden Characters
The fun part about designing a fairy garden is creating a unique theme and deciding on what type of accessories and fairy characters will live in your garden. The fairy characters you chose will largely revolve around your theme and personal preference. The options are limitless!
If you are creating a pirate theme, then you might have some pirates, a parrot, a mermaid, and a treasure chest. If your building a fantasy garden, then you may include some wizards, fairies, trolls, dragons, a king and queen, knights, and a big castle.
Whatever your design may be, make sure to find characters that compliment your landscape and fit in well with your theme.
If you want to create your own fairy garden furniture or accessories, then you may need some additional supplies. These supplies are purely optional and would only be required as needed.
- Hot Glue Gun
- Hot Glue Sticks
- Popsicle Sticks
- Pruning Shears
- Sculpting Clay
The great thing about fairy gardens is that there are endless possibilities and design ideas. Fairy gardens are easy to build and can be as simple or detailed as you desire. The more you create the more addicted you become, and soon your home and your garden will be filled with magical wonders of your imagination.
Meet Brad, the creator behind Vivarium Vibes, where his deep connection with nature and animals truly comes to life.