Tiny Worlds

I don’t know anyone who at some point in their lives were not fascinated by miniature worlds; be they in the form of dollhouses, puppetering, or leggos and erector sets (the ultimate in miniturized building!).  It’s also no wonder that so many of us adults still make it a point to go see the Christmas windows at Neimans / Macy’s / Barneys (pick your price bracket) which almost always are elaborately composed scenes created using smaller-scale dolls, mannequins, and papier-mache creatures of dream and nightmare.

I figure this is the same reason that normal, sane adults are so taken by the wee, the tiny, and the twee (that’s wee and tiny put together).  Things like this make us screw up our eyes and force us to move in closer, while putting us in touch with those delicious feelings of youth. In this example, there are tiny concrete boxes with little itty bitty plants growing inside:  I love both the use of concrete and plants, but also the fact they managed to make it wearable.  Genius! (p.s., these are available on etsy.com)

nature necklace

And then, there are these tiny aquatic environments.  If some of you who saw us at one fo the outdoor shows might recall, we *tried* to create small hanging fish bowls using lightbulbs and wine glasses that have been strung and tied to hang from a hook.  Nature had her way with these hanging environments, tossing them around in high breezes and nearly boiling their little fishy inhabitants in high heat before I just had way too many protests about the cruelty factor.  We eventually agreed that as cool as it ‘could’ be, this idea just never panned out as hoped. (they did however work well as cut flower holders!)

Jeweled goblet showing detail

This creation was much smaller in reality than in this photo, lol!  This little fish did okay for a while but I eventually returned her to the larger 20 gallon tank.  She seemed dazed and confused before I did so – probably a lack of oxygen coupled with the tiny space freaked her out.

Now, an example of doing it right: *This* is a great way of creating a true underwater environment in which no fish/shrimp/snails have been harmed – the wonderful marimo ball!  Japanese myth hold that these little algae balls (which supposedly do continue to grow) bring good luck; as such, I need to get a hold of a LOT of these adorable green suckers.  Don’t they look fantastic in these lightbulb vases?  Again, genius! 

marimo ball bulb aquarium

And then there’s this incredibly artistic tree perched on a ring; the ultimate in tiny worlds.

tree ring

Expectations met!

LR bulb closeup…disappointment averted. Yeah! I think that’s about the best thing one can say sometimes. In this case, I’m referring to the nifty little lightbulb terraria/planters we made up this fall and winter. Some of you might have acquired one. If so, I truly hope they are alive and kicking as well as these are. They were stragglers from the last show in December, but will be available again in the spring (come onnnnnn, March!) quite full and frothy with succulent-goodness.

Mainly, I’m giving them alot of light (in this case north-facing; not out of strategy but out of necessity. It’s the only window with latches to hang them on in our new house) and a few tiny burps of water about every 10 days or so. I judge them on how dry they look. If we’ve got the heat on higher in the house, they will dry out faster. Since they are not closed at the top, they are not true terrariums, and so lose water like any open system will; just not as fast because of the bulb shape with the narrow opening at the top.

I’m just so excited that they are doing what I said they would, reaching up and out of the bulbs and into the sky!  Especially the little runty one on the right, below.  I was really starting to worry about him… but patience in all things does pay off.  And with sedum, I can say for certain that a little benign neglect is the best show of love.  Isn’t nature cool!?

LR bulbs 2