{How To Make a MINI GARDEN}


Some people call them mini gardens

Some people call them fairy gardens….

Some people call them container gardens

Mine is sans any fairies so I’m sticking with


northern cottage mini garden tutorial



how to make a mini garden @ northern cottage

ok let’s get started….

First you’ll need to select a container

Make sure it has some drainage holes

(you can either add them but drilling some holes in the bottom or if you’re using a vintage container perhaps it comes complete with some awesome rust spots that provide excellent drainage!)

Another option is to add some rocks/gravel to the bottom to provide an escape for watering overflow

(you can use this rocks-in-the-bottom option if your container is going to be indoors or mostly covered where you’ll control the watering)

If your container is going to exposed to rain, it will need a way to let the excess escape so you’re plants don’t drown.

northern cottage mini garden container

Here I’ve selected a beautiful vintage enamel bowl which already has some rusty (mmmm) drainage holes
in the bottom

I’ve also selected a handled basket for
another mini garden

note - this tutorial is flitting back and forth between the two containers as I was working on both of them at the same time and took pictures of the process using both containers


ok so after you’ve selected your container, you can line it with some coffee filters or landscape fabric to keep the dirt in & still let the water out

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Now add your soil

I do a combo of regular potting soil in the majority of the container and then top it with cactus soil
(which is great for succulents)

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See my big ol bucket of dirt

I love this thing!


northern cottage bucket o dirt


Now you can map out a plan and determine where you want to place your elements

* plants

* pebble paths

* mini accessories

* rocks

Now just play!
Deciding which plants to include in your mini garden

choices choices choices!!

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Now add your plants!

Just two or three per container is plenty


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Add paths and any other fun elements you’d like

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How stinkin cute is this
little itsy bitsy wheelbarrow and shovel?

In this one below, I’ve added a vine plant that will grow around the handle of this basket to act kinda like an arbor

sweet eh?

northern cottage mini garden in the making

I’m in love with that little itty watering can above


for the mini garden is super easy

Because you’re probably using succulents – they need infrequent waterings (maybe once a week or so depending on where you live and how hot it gets, how much direct FULL sun they get, etc.)

Maybe give the plants a trim now and then so they stay compact and contained


I’m on a bit of a mini garden kick…

and can’t stop making them!

Here are some other mini garden ideas

this one has a little built-in patio

Northern Cottage mini garden

I’ll be sharing more here as I finish them!!!


 Now go forth and

make a mini garden of your own!! 

I’d love to see what you put together so feel free to connect back my way so I can see yours!


Also – FEEL FREE to checkout my




Chat soon -

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  1. This is such a cute idea, our garden is pretty much all containers so this idea is perfect to add some fun to the garden!

    Thanks for sharing

  2. Love your little garden (& tutorial) and the wheelbarrow is sooooo sweet! Thanks for stopping by our wee garden... that is all the fairies can talk about right now! :)

  3. I am making one today so your post was sooo needed thanks for givin me a lil inspiration!

  4. So sweet! I can't wait to make one, now I have a reason to go junkin' tomorrow! Thanks!

  5. This is so lovely! I love miniature gardening and balcony gardening (as a proud owner of a tiny balcony :))
    I am following your boards!
    Thank you for the inspiration,

  6. So cute! Darn clever, love it! XOXO

  7. i love the idea of mini gardens. in fact, i have a beach-in-a-pot article on the blog, which I know you will also love. come check that out. and meanwhile, hope you come share your creative ideas and participate in our linky party: http://www.finecraftguild.com/party/

  8. I've made a few of these too and they are so darn cute!

  9. This would be a great idea for a mini herb garden! Super cute!!!


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