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Tiny terrariums

Colchester, Vermont - January 16, 2012

Liz Kiggen loves to get her hands dirty. "I'd much rather walk in the woods than go shopping," she said.

And on those walks she often picks up moss and other pieces of nature, bringing the outside in.  It inspired her to start a company -- Terraria.

She creates miniature terrariums -- gardens under glass -- in her Colchester kitchen.
"Basically a collage with nature under glass," she said.

Kiggen is a master gardener, but if you don't have the greenest thumb -- don't worry.  Tropical and succulent plants that like humid climates thrive on their own. "It's really just the natural respiration of plants, so they actually water themselves," she said.

Just like nature, each one is different. Kiggen finds her odd shaped containers at vintage shops and yard sales. And when it comes to the plants, she relies on her imagination and inspiration from the outdoors. "It all begins with the glass and I think the more unique shapes are the most fun," she said.

Her newest experiment -- light bulbs.  To plant these tiny gardens she uses tweezers and feathers to clean any dirt out. "When I think of a design, sometimes I have the design in my head for weeks, it's just a matter of finding the right combination of plants and glassware," Kiggen said.

Terrariums have been around for a long time, but Kiggen says there's new interest in these fully functioning eco-systems as people want to reconnect to nature inside their homes.  She delivers her creations to a few local stores like Home in Shelburne. They range in price from $20 to $200.

"They grow slowly in this environment, but leaves come and go and you do have to trim them every once in a while." Kiggen said.

Little pieces of nature, capturing the spirit of Vermont's outdoors.

Click here for more on Terraria Terrariums.

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