Wine Bottle Terrariums

If you make or enjoy wine chances are you’ve got a large number of empty bottles lying around the house, and while there are a variety of different things that can be done with empty wine bottles (recycling, candle-making, bird-feeder construction to name just a few), one way to recycle an empty wine is to turn it into a miniature terrarium.

That’s right. A terrarium.

Terrariums are small containers that provide a high humidity environment for plants that might not otherwise survive very long in your home.

A wine bottle terrarium can make a great gift to friends and family members, and is especially well received as a birthday gift or, even better, a winter holiday gift. Those who won’t be expecting to see such lovely, thriving plant-life in the colder months will be absolutely thrilled to receive such a kind, personalized gift.

The process of making a wine-bottle terrarium is fairly simple and quite cheap, especially since you’re starting out with your own empty wine bottle. Here are the items you’ll need to make your wine bottle terrarium:

  • Glass container (in this case, a wine bottle, although jars and even light bulbs can be used)
  • Activated charcoal (the kind sold at pet shops for aquariums)
  • Pea gravel
  • Potting soil
  • Moisture-loving plants
  • Plant life (you can choose plants of various heights and colors, but they ought to have the same needs and conditions so you can care for them all simultaneously. Moss is a great choice for beginners and is easily found in any backyard or wooded environment.)

Each of the materials should be relatively easy to find and affordable prices. Once you have your materials, you can begin setting up your terrarium.

STEPS

1)      First off, begin by washing your container in hot, soapy water and drying it afterward.

2)      Line the bottom with a thin layer of gravel for drainage.

3)      Place a ½ inch layer of activated charcoal onto the gravel. The charcoal will filter the air.

4)      Add around 1-½ inches of moist, high quality growing medium rich in organic material into the mix

5)      You’re now ready to insert your plants. Trim off any damaged parts, place the plants in the soil using long tweezers or a stick with a wire loop attached to the end, and gently tamp down the soil. Try to keep the leaves from touching the glass to prevent rot.

6)      Mist the inside of your terrarium and let it sit for a day before misting again. Once the water has evaporated off the leaves, you can cover the container.

7)      Make you to stick it in the sun so your plants will thrive.

And that’s all there is to it! You can keep several terrariums in your home or in your office at work, or you can choose to give them away as gifts – even sell them at your local Farmer’s Market. If you do decide to sell or give them away don’t forget to label your products with custom hang tags. A wide variety of excellent, custom wine bottle hang tags and labels can be found at Labels on the Fly.

Stay tuned for more fun wine bottle facts and tips from Custom Wine and Beer Bottles.

The Right Wine for Any Occasion

different kind of wineIf you’re just getting into home wine making odds are you’re apt to want to start learning about what wine goes best with what type of food, and which wine is right for certain occasions.

While there are really no real rules when choosing the best wine for each occasion, you’ll probably want to take into consideration who’s coming to the event (certain people have certain wine preferences) and, if there’s food at the event, what’s being served (pairing food and wine together can be fairly easy if you have a rough idea of what you’re doing).

Wine is meant to complement certain occasions and dishes.

With that having been said, here are a few ‘soft’ guidelines to help you choose the right wine for the right occasion.

  • White wines are often used for starting off an evening on the right foot, and are also wonderful for toasts and special occasions.
  • Champagne is a regular fixture at weddings and is indispensable at such occasions.
  • Red wines are great for main courses and are typically served during the latter part of any occasion. Their full bodied nature makes them a great complement to hearty meals.
  • Pinot Noir is not as heralded as Merlot or Cabernet, so many people may not recognize its unique blend, but it goes well with creamy sauces.
  • Shiraz is a fiery complement to spicy dishes, and its taste can enhance the flavor in barbecues and roasts.
  • Chianti is the best wine to accompany tomato dishes and poultry.wine for holiday

When choosing what wine you want to bring to a special occasion you should also consider how it will be presented during the occasion.

For example, will you be branding your bottle for the occasion? If so Labels on the Fly offers a wide variety of decorative, customizable holiday, wedding, and birthday themed wine labels and hang tags.

Sometimes the look of the bottle can represent whats inside it.

Above all, though, if your instinct cries out for a special type of wine for a special occasion go with it. Your instinct is usually right, especially if its in an area you’re experienced in.

Good luck on picking your wine, and stay tuned for more wine making tips and recipes!

Wine Bottling Fun Facts

wine bottle colorsAre you getting ready to bottle your first batch of home-made wine? If so, here are a few facts you ought to keep in mind for choosing the right bottle for you.

What’s Your Wine?

Different wines belong to different bottles by tradition. Although you don’t have to follow tradition with every wine you bottle, knowing the information will still come in handy. Don’t forget to keep the temperature constant in the place where you store your wine.

  • Port, sherry, and Bordeaux varieties: straight-sided and high-shouldered with a pronounced punt. Port and sherry bottles may have a bulbous neck to collect any residue.
  • Burgundies and Rhône varieties: tall bottles with sloping shoulders and a smaller punt.
  • Rhine (also known as hock or hoch), Mosel, and Alsace varieties: narrow and tall with little or no punt.
  • Champagne and other sparkling wines: thick-walled and wide with a pronounced punt and sloping shoulders.
  • German wines from Franconia: the Bocksbeutel bottle.
  • The Chianti and some other Italian wines: the fiasco, a round-bottomed flask encased in a straw basket.

What Color Bottle?

Different wines belong in differently colored bottles, but remember – lighter color bottles should be stored in dark areas as wine can be subject to UV rays which cause wine to become ‘light struck’ (meaning it will develop an unpleasant odor).

  • Bordeaux: dark green for reds, light green for dry whites, clear for sweet whites.
  • Burgundy and the Rhone: dark green.
  • Mosel and Alsace: dark to medium green, although some producers have traditionally used amber.
  • Rhine: amber, although some producers have traditionally used green.
  • Champagne: Usually dark to medium green. Rosé champagnes are usually a colorless or green.

Now that you have a basic idea of the types of wine bottles that are out there, you should begin thinking about branding your wine. A bottle label can say everything about the wine in the bottle, making your wine appear more professional and helping it stand out among competitors.

A variety of expertly designed wine labels and wine hang tags, perfect for holiday and wedding wines, can be found at Labels on the Fly.

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