The Timeless Beauty of Preserved Moss Terrariums

Preserved moss terrariums provide a different lens through which you can appreciate nature in the home.

Immortalizing the best qualities of moss (I’m torn between vibrancy or fluffiness) and using it to create art that goes the distance, no matter your horticultural skills. 

Honestly, they’re pretty practical, too.

I mean, how many dark areas of your home could use a bit of fresh “greening-up,” but you simply can’t grow anything there? 

Even low-light terrarium plants have their limits…

So, in this guide, we’ll explore the different kinds of preserved moss terrariums available and what they can do for you/your home in terms of style and practicality.

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Types of Preserved Moss Terrariums

There are a variety of ways to go about “planting” a preserved moss terrarium.

In many ways, it’s far easier than a live moss terrarium. All you need is a suitable container, some preserved moss, a hot glue gun, and a creative will to make moss magic!

With the help of glue and a lack of natural planting restrictions, it’s mostly down to creative freedom. How can you best fill your container for the mass moss appeal?

Here are some examples to get you started.

1. “Boxes”

Something akin to the classic Ikea cabinet terrarium but shrunk down and packed to the brim with fluffy moss.

preserved moss terrariums - moss box
This is my favorite kind (๐Ÿ‘‰ Moss Box by ome).

I love how the squareness of the box contrasts with the natural curves of the cushion moss. 

I think it’s a wonderful container choice for this kind of project.

However, if making one of these yourself, I’d always recommend adding some additional structure to the display (as this one has via cork bark chunks).

Moss has some natural variation, but without additional structure, you’ll end up making more of a moss wall in a box.

preserved moss terrariums - moss box
This cork bark “spine” really helps add planting opportunities and provides some much-needed depth.

2. “Prisms”

Ahh, the classic geometric terrarium craze is making a new comeback!

preserved moss terrariums - prism
It almost feels nostalgic (๐Ÿ‘‰ Prism by ome).

To be fair, these do look super fresh. If I were making one, I’d likely start with something like this. 

The way the glass pulls in towards the front creates a narrower viewing angle, which makes for a slightly simpler build (or at least framing). That’s where to put your structural element.

In these examples, you can also see some sheet moss (it’s the lighter green) used to provide some texture and color contrast.

Mood Moss would be another great choice for a “clumpy” moss.

preserved moss terrariums - prism
Here’s an alternative with stone steps instead of cork. (๐Ÿ‘‰ Stone Prism by ome)

3. “Pillars”

Using hardscape to its fullest, you can even construct your own mossy mountain.

preserved moss terrariums - cloche
Mountain or monolith? (๐Ÿ‘‰ Cloche by ome).

Granted, this is arguably the most difficult to pull off, but the effect really is stunning.

It’s perfect for a table centerpiece, as it’s the only preserved moss terrarium with stunning 360-degree views.

You can use all sorts of materials besides just cork bark. As far as stone goes, I’d start with Dragon Stone because it’s full of holey planting opportunities, and it’s pretty lightweight. 

preserved moss terrariums - cloche
It’s even harder to fit inside of a cloche like this one.

Pros, Cons (and Important Points)


  • They really do require zero care. The less you do with them, the better, really.
  • Preserved moss terrariums can go where no live terrarium can survive in the home. Even the darkest corner of your basement. Is it a terrible idea? Probably, but it’s possible!
  • These are perfect gifts for people who are interested in terrariums but don’t have the time or skill required to care for a live one.

*Side note: preserved moss terrariums sometimes also go by the name “Zero Moss Terrariums,” presumably for their zero care requirements. Or maybe because it just sounds cool… and to be fair, it does.


  • Much like live terrariums, they cannot be placed in direct light (more on that later), so I’m afraid you can’t show them off to your nosy neighbors.
  • When handled, preserved moss can temporarily stain your hands “Shrek green” (as Rae experienced firsthand when building our DIY moss wall). All the more reason to buy one rather than make your own.

Preserved Moss Care Tips

Care tips? In truth, you don’t care for them!

Or at least not directly. 

That said, some important aspects of their environment can make quite a difference in the long run.

  1. Keep out of direct sunlight – Whether it’s bleaching of the moss or melting of the glue, direct sun is the fastest way to “unpreserve” your terrarium.
  2. Beware of high humidity – In the vast majority of cases, humidity won’t be a problem. But for those edge cases with consistently high humidity and poor airflow, it can cause some issues.
  3. Absolutely do not water them – Adding water in any way is a fast-track ticket to a (likely very green) mess on your table.

Where to Buy Preserved Moss Terrariums

If you’re looking to buy ready-made preserved moss artwork, we recommend you go to Joe at ome.

๐Ÿ‘‰ Click here to shop the full collection.

(And we really do recommend you buy these as opposed to making them yourself; it’s messy business at the best of times).

Though we received these items for free in order to photograph them, the whole shipping and unboxing experience matched the premium nature of the products. 

  • Shipping – Though I had these shipped to my home in England (which is laughably easy to manage compared to the US), I know Joe has purposefully set his store up to pay all shipping costs, duties, and taxes upfront – hereby removing any barriers to international purchases. 
  • Quality – Pulling off moss artwork of this caliber is harder than it looks (and we’ve tried!). I’m certain a lot of love, time, and skill went into the making of these pieces, and it shows.
  • Packaging – Super high-quality packaging with some innovative eco-friendly materials (I bet it’s really expensive). I’d absolutely trust the glassware arriving safely over long distances.
terrarium packaging
Seriously, what is this honeycomb magic?!

What Are You Waiting For?

Having more ways to bring moss into the home is never a bad thing, and preserved moss terrariums give us plenty more options.

Do you feel inspired to make/grab one for yourself?

Let me know in the comments!

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