How to Plant Succulents in Glass Containers

Succulents are already beautiful in their natural way. But, did you know that you can make them more decorative by placing them in a glass container? If you want to know how to plant succulents in glass containers, we’ll lead the way for you.

You can plant succulents in glass bowls, vases, mason jars, and even fish bowls with or without holes. You just need a soil mix specially designed for succulents and some pumice or activated charcoal to help with the drainage.

In this article, you’ll get enlightened on what other materials to prepare and how to successfully grow succulents in a glass container. We also laid out the pros and cons to help you decide if it’ll be worth it, so stick around!

Planting succulent terrarium

Step 1: Prepare Your Materials

In planting succulents, it’s important to choose the right materials as they can either lead to a planting success or failure.

Generally, these are what you’ll need for growing a succulent terrarium:

Glass Containers

Glass containers are perfect for getting decorative indoor succulent plants. You can use any type of clear glass container such as glass terrarium bowls, glass vases, and mason jars.

You can also use old bottles and unused fish bowls; provided that you’ll clean them before using them.


There’s a great variety of succulent plants to choose from depending on the arrangement you prefer. Small succulents are recommended, but you can also get a bigger and beautifully-hued one to place in the middle. It’s also good to get varying heights and textures for extra aesthetic points.

Just make sure to choose succulents with similar needs. In other words, don’t place succulents that prefer shade with others that want sunlight in the same container.

Well-drained Potting Mix

Use a well-drained potting mix, preferably, a cactus mix with no peat moss. While peat moss is often beneficial for other plants, it can be acidic for succulents. Plus, it retains moisture which we want to avoid for our succulents.

You can also create your succulent potting mix by mixing two parts sand, two parts potting soil, and one part perlite or pumice.

Decorative Materials

You can use white sand, colored stones, rocks, gray and white pebbles, some bark, and any other decorative materials you can think of.


Prepare a small spoon and/or garden trowel for scooping the soil. If your glass container has holes, you’ll be needing tape mesh as well.

Other Materials

Prepare pumice and activated charcoal for good drainage. Don’t forget the filtered water.

Reader Also Checked: How to Keep Succulents Small: 5 Pro Tips

Step 2: Fill the Glass Container

Once everything is prepared, it’s time to fill your chosen glass container with well-draining materials.

First, squirt some pumice on the bottom layer of your chosen glass container. Adding pumice will enhance drainage, especially if your container doesn’t have holes. It’ll basically hold on to moisture to make sure the roots of your succulents won’t rot.

For added help, you may layer the pumice with activated charcoal. This will prevent algae from building up in the glass container. It’ll also drive away unwanted bugs and help in absorbing excess water to prevent root rot.

Alternatively, you may use lava rock, as it’s another good way to increase drainage.

Now, add the cactus mix halfway through the glass container. This will give you space for positioning the succulents. You’ll be filling this up afterward.

Important Note: Use a Glass Container With Holes Instead

Since moisture is the number one enemy of succulents, adding pumice and activated charcoal will enhance drainage.

However, if you don’t have these materials and you want to dig a hole at the bottom of the glass container, that’s also fine. Just cover the holes with mesh tape to prevent the soil from slumping down. It’ll still keep the water running, hence allowing good drainage.

For this part, you can just fill the container with a well-draining cactus soil mix.

Step 3: Pull Out the Succulent From Its Original Container

Some varieties of succulents are so delicate that they’ll drop leaves even at the slightest touch. Hence, when pulling your succulents from their potting soil, you have to be gentle.

Examine also the soil it originates from. If the soil has too much moisture in it, it’s better to change it completely. Besides, if you’ve purchased the succulent, its growing medium may not be ideal for your plant.

Don’t forget to remove any dead leaves on the lower part of the plant before positioning it in the soil.

Step 4: Position the Succulents in the Glass Container

Succulents in a terrarium

Here comes the exciting part—positioning and arranging your succulents according to your preferred style.

How you arrange it is all up to you. Nonetheless, if your glass container is big enough for your succulent, you may consider adding smaller ones for a prettier and fuller look. Just leave spaces in between to allow room for your succulents’ growth.

Step 5: Add Another Layer of Soil

Now that you’ve positioned the succulents, settle the plant by adding another layer of soil around it. Pour just enough so that the roots are lightly buried.

Make sure that the leaves are above the soil, otherwise, they’ll rot. Moreover, keep the succulents straight and not bent.

Step 6: Add Decorative Materials

After settling the succulents in the glass container, you may add a layer of decorative materials. You can place white sand, bark, rocks, or pebbles on the surface of the soil for a cooler arrangement.

You can also draw something on the container or design it with glittery papers—it’s all up to you.

Step 7: Water the Succulents

Once everything is done, pour your plant a little water to drink. Remember not to over-water it. Otherwise, it’ll promote waterlog which isn’t healthy for succulents.

It’s advisable to give this plant a drink once every two weeks or whenever the soil feels dry. Remember that succulents are better off under-watered than over-watered.

Also Check: How to Get Rid of Aphids on Succulents

How to Keep Your Succulents Happy in the Glass Containers?

Succulents are low-maintenance plants and are quite easy to please. They’ll be happy to stay by the windowsill or any area where they can get bright light. Just don’t expose them to intense heat for too long.

This plant will also be happy to stay in areas where there’s good air circulation. This condition will prevent succulents from damping off.

What Are the Pros and Cons of Planting Succulents in Glass Containers?

Succulents in terrarium

Having succulents in glass containers is a nice idea. Yet, it’s vital that you weigh the benefits and the risks of doing so to know if it’ll be worth it.

Here are the pros of planting succulents in glass containers:

  • Putting succulents in glass containers is a sight to behold
  • You can put the unused glass bottles or even glass yogurt to good use
  • It allows you to be creative and resourceful in enhancing the look of your indoor succulent terrarium
  • It can make for a great gift to your relatives and/or friends
  • Since most glass containers don’t have holes at the bottom, you don’t have to worry about wetting or staining the floor.

The following are the cons of planting succulents in glass containers:

  • Growing succulents in glass containers with no holes can result in waterlog and cause succulents to die
  • You’ll need to be extra careful so as not to overwater or underwater the succulent terrarium
  • The glass container is fragile and may break when you’re not careful
  • Succulents in glass containers don’t live long compared to those grown in pots with draining holes

Wrap-Up: How to Plant Succulents in Glass Containers?

Planting succulents in glass containers is easy and fun. Use pumice and a well-drained cactus soil mix to promote good drainage. Add it into a clear glass container of your choice—it can be a new or recycled one.

Then, you can plant different succulents in one container as long as they have similar needs.

For a great finishing look, you can add stones, pebbles, rocks, or bark. There you have it! You now have a decorative indoor succulent plant!