Make a Mini Mary Garden with Kids

This week the kids and I made some Mary garden terrariums! Not only was this super fun, but it opens the door to discussing evaporation, plants, roots, and honoring Mary.

I want to start out by saying that I'm not a garden expert, nor am I an expert on terrarium making. I read all about making terrariums with kids here, and it had a lot of great information! For all I know you're going to tell me that I let my kids plant poison ivy in their terrariums (although I certainly hope not).

We made our terrariums using apple sauce jars because, well... my kids eat tons of apple sauce. Pickle jars would have been better because they have a wider mouth for arranging the plants. My kids could fit their hands into the jars, but I couldn't. I was able to use a stick to help arrange things.

We put some potting soil in the bottom, and planted some inpatients. I'm sure the inpatients weren't the best choice because they grow too big, but I had them on hand so that's what we used.

Then we walked around the yard and I let them select some other things for their terrariums- plants, rocks, whatever. I think you could even add some bugs if you wanted.

We also added some moss.

The moss was great because it can go in front of your Mary statue without being tall and covering her up.

We used Mary statues from old nativity sets- you know- the ones you don't set out at Christmas anymore because you have so many, but don't get rid of because, well, who gets rid of nativity sets? You can piece out old St. Joseph statues for mini St. Joseph altars, too. :-)

I actually had some trouble finding Mary statues that were skinny enough to fit into the narrow jar openings, so make sure you test your Mary statue before you begin. My kids were able to help me place my Mary statue in my jar since my hand didn't fit. It was nice for them to get to help me for a change! ;-)

Once you're all finished, water your mini Mary garden and put on the lid! Terrariums are great because they water themselves! This is a huge plus to me, because I do NOT have a green thumb. Remembering to water house plants around here is just never going to happen. Look how happy Lydia is with her mini Mary garden!

By the way, these terrariums are the most challenging craft I have ever had to photograph for this blog!

We are proudly displaying our mini Mary gardens on a shelf on our porch. We practically live on our porch this time of year! If you'd like to make something really classy for display, you can try making terrariums in apothecary jars.

Fortunately, the shelf is tall enough keep them out of Violet's reach. :-)

This was a super fun outdoor activity that my kids absolutely loved, and I'll admit that I had a lot of fun with this one, too. Plus, it's super cheap if you just use plants from around your yard. Now, if only I could spruce up my real Mary garden....

Toldja I don't have a green thumb. ;-)
Plus, my poor Mary statue needs to be glued back together again. Again.

If you enjoyed this post, get free updates by email or RSS. Photobucket


  1. I love this idea! We eat a lot of applesauce here too! lol
    I especially like your idea of using the Mary's out of old nativity sets. Often you can find these very cheap at the yard sales or after Christmas sales. I don't have a large collection yet but now I know what to do when I see some really cheap!

  2. Ya, I'm pretty much obsessed with nativity sets, and with second hand
    shopping. I don't think we'll be running out of nativity set pieces around
    here any time soon. ;-)

  3. This is a wonderful idea. You can also find parts of nativity scenes at dollar stores too if you don't want to use the ones from the nativity. Most of my nativity scene pieces are attached at the base. I can't wait to try this out with my boys. They area already drawn to the huge Fatima altars outside our church.

  4. It's true- there are a lot of places to find cheap nativity set pieces...
    unfortunately this is the wrong time of year for it!

  5. Oh man!  I LOVE this idea!!!!  Seriously, where do you come up with all these amazing ideas!  You rock!!!  Thanks again Lacy!

  6. Aw thanks! This idea literally came from an abundance of applesauce jars.

  7. I LOVE THIS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!  Oh my gosh!  I love it!  I always "save" Mary from thrift stores and garage sales...I'm going to keep on doing it and do this when my daughter is older!  I might not even wait!  This is brilliant! ;) 

  8. Ohh, I just love this too.  Can't wait to try it some time soon.  Your ideas are wonderful because they are SO do-able.  You continue to be a blessing to countless families! 

  9. I do that, too! I can never leave a Mary or a crucifix behind when I'm
    second hand shopping!:-)

  10. Thank you so much for this post! Make a terrarium is on the top of my summer list, if you can believe it! This is so helpful!

  11. Different players' guidelines will be different.

    Also visit my web site - Not working?, ,


Thanks for your comments! They're the icing on my cake ;-)