Wednesday, 15 January 2014

Book binding

Making handmade books 
100 + Bindings: Structures and Forms 
Alisa Golden, 2010
And so from this I have decided to stitch bind my book. I feel that it is an alternative to stapling, and I did not want to have a perfect bind as it felt almost too traditional and my audience may not interact with this as well as they would with a more handmade/ less traditional bind.

Tuesday, 14 January 2014

Not Just Fleurons

From this I have decided that I am going to aim to young adults who have moved out of home to grow their own plant- in the form of a terrarium. 
They may have just started a job or have gone to university, I think that this is a new market that plants don't really appeal to, and I think that it is important to grow plants and this audience doesn't usually find this interesting. 

What is a Terrarium ? >>>>
Terrarium, simulating a dry habitat, for instance desert or savannah. A terrarium can also be formed to create a temperate woodland habitat, and even a jungle-like habitat. This can be created with pebbles, leaf litter and soil. By misting the terrarium, a natural water cycle occurs within the environment by condensation forming on the lid causing precipitation.

'Terrariums are a popular garden style because they require little maintenance to flourish, yet have an endlessly elegant look.  The key to success is choosing the right plants. A great variety to start with is Golden Club Moss because it thrives in a low light, high moisture environment. Other great starter plants include water-retaining, light-loving succulents and cacti. They’re virtually indestructible and come in many colors, shapes and varieties.'

It's easy to make a terrarium to grace your desk, dining room table, or other well-lit spot. Step-by-step instructions on how to plant a terrarium.

Perk Up Your Indoor Space

Add a little green to your indoor space with an eye-catching terrarium! Not only are they a great oxygen booster, terrariums are easy to create and can be made in a variety of sizes. Change the container to fit into any d├ęcor.


  • Container
  • Activated charcoal pieces

  • Potting soil

  • Gloves

  • Terrarium plant
  • Sheet moss

  • Watering can

  • Trowel

Build the Base

Install approximately 1-2 inches of charcoal at base of container.

Mix It Up

Combine remaining charcoal with soil either by hand or with trowel.

Add the Second Layer

Fill your container one-fourth to one-third full with the charcoal-and-soil mixture. Gently pack the soil every 2 inches to avoid large air pockets.

Add Greens

Carefully remove your plants from their containers and position them on top of the soil to ensure proper spacing. Allow enough room between the plants for additional soil.

Squash Air Pockets

Use your hands to pack soil in and around plants. Tuck plants deep enough into the soil to cover all plant roots and to keep the plants from reaching too far above the top of the container.

Top Dress

With gloves, position moss on top of the soil and between the plants.

Give Them a Drink

Water plants and place container in a well-lit area with indirect light. Future watering is dependent on the types of plants you have selected and the environment they're growing in. Test the soil for moisture before pulling out the watering can.

Further Care

Maintenance is minimal once the plants are established. As they grow you may want to trim any branches that grow out and over the top of your container.


• Keep it simple. Three plants is probably plenty. Or forget the plants and try just moss and stones.
• Stand a planted terrarium in a light position but not in direct sun.
• Wood, moss, stones or other natural objects are important to give context in among the plants. They can mimic a full-sized landscape but in miniature.
• Marten uses real fossils in his landscapes as they bring something genuinely old, beautiful but affordable into a modern house and won’t spoil among damp earth and plants.

• The growing medium, which should be very free-draining at the base, can be layered in textures. Add a little crumbled charcoal to keep the soil sweet.
• Terrarium gardeners soon learn how to adapt tools for working in confined spaces. Long tweezers without too much spring, tiny forks or trowels taped to bamboo canes, chopsticks, a length of hose and a funnel to add composts and grit, all are simple to obtain or make.
• Always keep plants which need special conditions together. Don’t try mixing drought-loving succulents with moisture-loving ferns, for example.
• Once plants have established they need little maintenance. In enclosed spaces the moisture should recycle. Trial and error will establish when plants need any extra water.
• Remove any dead or dying foliage immediately to reduce the chance of fungal diseases. Prevent foliage from touching the glass sides

Best Plants for Terrariums...

1. Moon Valley Friendship Plant

'Moon Valley' friendship plant provides delicate patterning with deeply textured craters and valleys on two-toned leaves, which are tinted red on the underside. The fast-grower tolerates low light and at its maximum reaches 12 inches tall and wide; it may surprise with delicate pink flowers, too. This plant is a perfect size to enclose in virtually any glass container that's fit for a terrarium, such as cloches or jars. "I've even used butter dishes," Martin says.

Name: Pilea involucrata 'Moon Valley'

Size: To 12 inches tall and wide

2. Variegated Spider Fern

 (known as East Indian Holly Fern)
Variegated spider fern seems to glow in a terrarium, thanks to the shine of its glossy leaves. A broad yellow center band on each leaf supplies visual interest for the easy-growing fern, which tolerates low light and enjoys the moist potting mix and high humidity found inside a terrarium. If it outgrows your glass container, you can plant it in shade gardens in Zones 6-9.
Name: Arachnoides simplicior 'Variegata'

Size: To 16 inches tall and wide

3. Starfish Plant

One of Martin's favorite plants is the star-shape Cryptanthus bivittatus, also called starfish plant, which is a member of the bromeliad family. The straplike leaves nearly glow with iridescent stripes, which range from red to maroon, white, and deep green; the plant also has tiny flowers. The leaf colors of starfish plant change with the intensity of light, and its slow-growing nature -- it reaches only about 6 inches at maturity -- makes it well-suited for a terrarium. When filling your terrarium, follow Martin's lead and use 3/8-inch pebbles, horticultural charcoal, and potting soil. "In addition to the plants, those are the only real ingredients that are essential to a terrarium," Martin says.

Name: Cryptanthus bivittatus

Size: To 6 inches tall and wide

4. Nerve Plant

Nerve plant is a tropical choice with distinctively patterned leaves in burgundy and green. It thrives under the moist, warm air of a terrarium and will only reach 12 inches when fully mature. To plant a nerve plant inside a terrarium, Martin starts with about a 2-inch layer of pebbles mixed with a tablespoon of charcoal; the latter acts as filtration to keep everything "sweet" for terrarium plants.
Name: Fittonia verschaffeltii var. argyroneura

Size: To 12 inches tall and wide

5. Variegata

Its foliage has little color variation, but the textural ripples or wrinkles on the leaves of Peperomia caperata 'Variegata' provide welcome contrast to terrarium plants that may be patterned with color. The plant stays 6 inches tall and likes the low but regular light and moist conditions under the glass of a terrarium. Divide it for a friend -- or another terrarium -- by taking a leaf cutting. Ensure success for your terrarium by layering in 2 to 3 inches of potting soil, Martin says, and insert plants into that. Martin avoids landscape fabric between the layers. "I try to create something more like nature and less like control," she says.

Name: Peperomia caperata 'Variegata'

Size: To 6 inches tall and wide

6. Golden Clubmoss

Even though Selaginella kraussiana 'Aurea', or golden clubmoss, stays compact in height -- just up to 6 inches -- it likes to spread. In fact, it can reach 2 feet across, so keep it trimmed inside a terrarium. The light green foliage works wonders to brighten darker-color plants. Keep the soil moist but not wet. In warmer Zones, it also can be used in shade gardens as a ground cover.

Name: Selaginella kraussiana 'Aurea'

Size: To 6 inches tall and 2 feet wide

7. Aquamarine

Tiny variegation dots the small, silvery-blue, rounded leaves of Pilea glauca 'Aquamarine', a terrarium plant that loves high humidity and low light. Use its low-growing, densely matted, creeping pattern as a good base for other plants in your terrarium, or take it outside in warm weather for hanging pots or containers as an edger. It stays small -- only 12 inches tall -- making it easy to tuck in terrariums.
Name: Pilea glauca 'Aquamarine'

Size: To 12 inches tall and wide

8. Air Plant

Hardy only in Zones 9-11, Tillandsia stricta, or air plant, is an interesting choice for a terrarium. Stunning, funnellike blue, purple, or pink flowers top its slender, pale green leaves, making the plant a natural terrarium choice for both color and texture. "Variegation and chartreuse foliage really stand out," Martin says. Other good textural plants include ferns and mosses.

Name: Tillandsia stricta

Size: To 8 inches tall and wide

9. Minimus Aureus

Tiny Acorus gramineus 'Minimus Aureus' rewards under a terrarium with grassy, striking golden foliage. "It's amazing how little maintenance terrariums require," Martin says. "They're so apropos for people that work in an office cubicle. They won't take a big chunk of time. Usually for weeks on end, I don't water mine." She does, however, open up her terrariums every so often to air them out, making sure there is still condensation on the glass. If there isn't, Martin waters very lightly.

Name: Acorus gramineus 'Minimus Aureus'

Size: To 14 inches tall and 6 inches wide

10. Black Mondo Grass

Black mondo grass, familiar to gardeners in Zones 6-9, sends up shoots of strappy leaves that turn from green to black, with delicate flowers appearing in spring. At maturity it reaches 15 inches tall so it works best for larger terrarium containers. Martin keeps this and other terrarium plants healthy by never misting them. "It's so humid in there, they don't need misting," Martin says. She also doesn't fertilize in order to keep the plants small. When planting terrariums, she makes sure to firmly put the plants in the soil. "You have to plant in terrariums like you plant in a garden," she says.

Name: Ophiopogon planiscapus 'Nigrescens'

Size: To 15 inches tall and 12 inches wide

11. Asplenium Bulbiferum

One of the bigger terrarium-suitable plants is the graceful arching fern Asplenium bulbiferum, which can reach 2 feet tall and 4 feet wide so needs to be regularly cut back. The diffused light inside a terrarium is perfect for this plant, also known as mother fern, as well as shade lovers, including Fittonia, creeping fig, dwarf coleus, and dwarf orchids.

Name: Asplenium bulbiferum

Size: To 2 feet tall and 4 feet wide

12. Strawberry Begonia

Its lovely burgundy-red vertical stalks and flowers lend Saxifraga stolonifera the nickname strawberry begonia. While the plant rapidly matures, it only reaches a height of 8 inches. Even when the wispy flowers aren't in bloom, the heart-shape foliage offers a two-tone pattern of green and deep red. To propagate for containers or other terrariums, simply snip off one of the runners. If well-tended, the plant will last a long time, as do many other terrarium bloomers. "I have many terrariums that are at least five years old," Martin says.

Name: Saxifraga stolonifera

Size: To 8 inches tall and 6 inches wide


A terrarium can be made virtually out of any glass shape 

'but [a terrarium] can be created from any watertight clear glass container such as a fish bowl, aquarium, large jar, jug or wine-making demi-john. Narrow-mouthed vessels will be harder to plant, but enjoy higher humidity and need less watering, while more open containers are suitable for drought-tolerant succulents and will be less susceptible to infestation and disease.

Whatever your container and planting, the first step is to provide a drainage layer, up to a quarter of the total height of the glass, to ensure that the plants' roots don't rot in standing water. Make sure all materials, gravel and rocks, are sterile by rinsing in boiling water; if your soil is not ready-sterilized, heat it in an oven to 200F (95C). Remember that bacteria and disease will thrive in the terrarium as well as the plants.'

Ken Martin 

 littleminutetinyslightminiminiatureminusculediminutivepetiteteenypunypint-sized(informal), pocket-sizedundersizedteeny-weenyLilliputianteensy-weensypygmy or pigmy 

=groundsparkplotpatchlawnallotmentyard forest park 

=back yard
, bed
, field
, greenhouse
, nursery, patio
, terrace, conservatory
, enclosure, hothouse , oasis
, patch, plot

, cold frame

=Arcadia,Garden of Eden, Promised Land, Shangri-la, garden, heaven, heaven on earth, utopia

=earth, sphere, apple, ball, balloon, big blue marble, map, orb, planet, rondure, round, spheroid, terrene, world

noun. area of responsibility or rule
=branch, compass, country, department, dimension, domain, dominion, empire, expanse, extent, field, ground, kingdom, land, monarchy, neck of the woods, neighborhood, orbit, place, principality, province, purview, radius, range, reach, region, scope, sphere, state, stomping grounds, sweep, territory, turf, world, zone