A Fairy Container Garden

Learn how to create a miniature world where things are small in scale and huge with possibilities.
A View From Above

A View From Above

A bird's eye view of a tiny world below.

A bird's eye view of a tiny world below.

A little while ago, I shared how to make a Coastal Fairy House. Today, I thought I would share how you can easily make a miniature sized garden in a container. 

It is incredibly easy to do, as many garden centers are now catering to customers' cravings for miniature items. Most garden centers now have areas entirely devoted to this fairy garden hobby. From the tiniest of trees, plants, succulents and accessories anyone can make a garden like this on their own. A project like this is for the young and old alike. But be forewarned, for some reason, many find these gardens highly addicting!  Here is what you need to get started:

Supplies:

  • A container—I used a basket approximately 20 inches x 16 inches
  • Plantings, such as fairy vine, 'Platt's Black', brass buttons, dwarf grasses, ferns, miniature evergreens, hens and chicks, succulents, wooly or creeping thyme, lavender, miniature roses, miniature daisies, Selaginella, miniature African violets, dianthus.
  • Moss
  • Potting soil
  • Accessories—purchased or homemade.

Take a peek at the gallery below on how you can get started.

Planting a Fairy Garden

See All Photos

A View From Above

Peering down from above the garden allows you to take in the entire layout.

Fairy Garden Plantings

Miniature varieties of plantings are widely available at your local garden centers and online. Included in this garden: button fern, asparagus fern, rosemary, diantus, hens and chicks, miniature common juniper, fairy vine, baby tears and leptinella.

A Basket Container

This basket was pre-lined with plastic. I cut drainage holes in the plastic and filled the basket almost completely with potting soil.

Test Out Placement

Considering where your structures will be, lay out your plants while still in their pots. This way it is easier to move them until you are satisfied with their placement.

Tallest to Shortest

Place taller plantings toward the back of your garden to provide depth. Here a miniature juniper is placed beside the coastal fairy house.

Layered Foliage

Select plants not only with beautiful blooms but also with a variety of foliage.

Add Clusters

Try planting a few plants relatively close to one another. This gives your garden the appearance that it has been around for years.

Create Pathways

With small pebbles or aquarium stones, create small pathways to entryways, patios and under trellises.

A Garden in a Garden

Think about creating a tiny garden with rows of hens and chicks for the fairies to tend.

Found Items

A miniature colander within the fairy house makes a lovely bed when filled with soft leaves and flower pillows.

Traveling Vines

Training vines to grow on rooftops, along fences and on trellises offers a whimsical touch.

To care for your fairy garden, be sure to water it regularly. Also, feel free to give a gentle pruning to any plantings that seem to outgrow their space. If you happen to lose a plant or it is not doing well, just gently remove it from the garden and replace it with something else. These gardens are always growing, changing and evolving—just like our regular gardens.

When you think about adding accessories, the only limit is your creativity.  In all of my miniature gardens, I like to incorporate both store-bought and homemade items.  When I am out and about, I seem to always have my miniature gardens in mind.  I love discovering fun little items at thrift stores, garden centers and even recycling found items in nature.  Acorn lids make perfect plates.  Leaves are natural blankets and place mats.  Sheets of moss can be transformed into rugs for houses.  Take a peek at the craft store too and be sure to stroll down the dollhouse aisle.  You will be amazed at what you find. Some people even like to decorate their gardens for the holidays. 

Fairy Garden Decorations

See All Photos

Garden Pets

This fairy garden features a chicken coop complete with a miniature basket of eggs.

For the Birds

A sweet bird house towers above.

Fence It In

A pre-bought picket fence is enhanced with a garden gate made from a piece of tree bark.

Fresh Flowers

Take advantage of wee containers and add fresh blooms.

A Working Garden

Every gardener needs a place to put the pulled weeds.

Think Vertical

Wired trellises add a whimsical touch and allow small vines to climb toward the sun.

Buzz

A sweet spot perfect for bees.

Add Sculpture

I added a tiny chicken I crafted from pottery on top of the coop's roof for a touch of whimsy.

Wee Animals

Tiny animals, such as these chickens, make a sweet scene.

Imitate Life

A darling cement morel mushroom is great for adding more interest.

A Home for a Gnome

No garden would be complete without a gnome to stand guard. This metal one is over 10 years old!

Dollhouse Furniture

Take a peek at your local craft store for dollhouse furniture. A cup of tea is just lovely on a pinecone bedside table.

A Shell Sink

A dollhouse mirror perched above an inverted shell creates a quiet place to tidy up.

If you are crafty and would like to make a few items that are unique to your garden, then take a peek at the gallery below. There you will find 5 simple ideas that you can make for your garden—a shell pool, a table set for tea, a fairy bed, a picture frame and a miniature basket of eggs.  

DIY Fairy Garden Accessories

See All Photos

A Basket of Eggs

With some bakeable clay (Sculpey or Fimo) roll out a thin strand of clay to about 12 inches or so. Begin to coil the clay onto itself to form the basket. Once the basket is complete, make some clay eggs and a handle. Place on a baking sheet. Bake according to package directions.

Create a Bed

Recycle a mint tin into a fairy bed. Add some leaves for bedding and covers. Fresh blooms turn into soft pillows.

Tea for Two

With waterproof glue, glue in place a tea kettle, cups and plates on a miniature table for an indestructible garden tea party.

Craft a Twig Picture Frame

Create a picture frame by wrapping floral wire around four twigs to form a frame. Insert a postage stamp or even a pretty picture from a seed package. Fairies love to recycle things.

A Garden Pool

Create a garden oasis by inverting a shell and filling it with water and floating flowers.

Next Up

How to Make a Decorative Garden Path

Make a fun, leaf-inspired garden path with this step-by-step guide for making steppingstones.

How to Make DIY Gardening Containers

Learn how to to make gardening containers out of things you find around the house.

Create a Mother's Day Tea Garden

Put a twist on tea in the garden by planting up vintage teacups.

Let It Wave: Craft a Garden-Inspired Flag

Declare your love of gardening and fly your own flag.

New Year, New Project: Make This Fridge Herb Garden With Recycled Tea Tins

Start the new year off healthy and organized with this adorable tea tin herb garden made for the fridge!

A Child's Quick and Easy Garden Tote

Nothing encourages a child to join you in gardening tasks like creating this inexpensive carryall together.

Make a Coastal Fairy House

Inspired by the coastal pine forest, sand and sea, a fairy house is crafted for the tiniest of folk.

Spin Control: Make a Spiral Planter

Quick and easy steps for making a striking vortex-planter.

Recycled Garden Art: Green Transformations

See how to turn landfill candidates into beautiful creations for your yard.

Garden Gift: Simmering Potpourri

Delight your friends and family this holiday season with a homemade gift inspired by the garden and crafted in the kitchen.

On TV

Shop This Look

Found a living space you love in HGTV's Photo Library? Get the look in your own home with products from Wayfair.

Follow Us Everywhere

Join the party! Don't miss HGTV in your favorite social media feeds.