House Plants: The Complete Guide to Choosing, Growing and Caring for Indoor Plants
By Lisa Eldred Steinkopf (Cool Springs Press, 2017)
Throwing millennials and houseplants together seems to be a thing in the media these days; this (slightly tongue-in-cheek) article from The Washington Post is only one example of many that I’ve come across lately. One glance at the racks in your local garden centre will tell you that indoor gardening is indeed experiencing a resurgence – for everyone’s benefit! There are so many more plant selections available, and not just the succulents and air plants that have been trendy for the past few years. Looking after houseplants is meditative, nourishing, and just plain enjoyable, but only if you know what you’re doing.
That’s what Lisa Eldred Steinkopf’s book is for: to help you succeed with your growing endeavours. In House Plants, Steinkopf (thehouseplantguru.com) thoroughly and precisely covers every detail: soil, water, light, containers, siting, propagation, and troubleshooting pests and diseases. Her advice is practical and easy to understand, even for those just getting into the hobby – this is a book that will definitely inspire confidence when it comes to keeping houseplants. (The chapter on propagation particularly impressed me, with its clear directions and accompanying photography). Indoor gardeners will appreciate that she even touches briefly on bonsai, topiary, living walls, water plants, and holiday plants, as these somewhat specialty niches become more mainstream.
Of course, it’s truly the more than 125 profiles of houseplants that attracted me most to the book…I feel like I now have a goal to try them all at some point (don’t tell my hubby!). I love the fact that individual plants are categorized according to their difficulty of cultivation and maintenance (again, this gives me something to work towards!). From ferns to figs to palms, orchids, and dracaena – it’s all here and each one is beautifully photographed to aid in identification. Comprehensive, useful, and a delight to pore through, this really is the “complete guide” to houseplants!
(Full disclosure: I was given a review copy of Lisa Eldred Steinkopf’s book House Plants by Cool Springs Press, an imprint of Quarto Publishing Group. All opinions are 100 percent my own. Heck, 300 percent my own).