Where did our houseplants come from and what’s the history behind them? From Babylonian gardens to the healing power of herbs, houseplants have been used for centuries to cultivate joy in our lives. In this episode, I spoke with Jane Perrone, OG planty podcaster and author of the newly released Legends of the Leaf. Jane has spent years researching and collecting stories, lore, and surprises about our beloved house plants, and is here to enlighten us about their history. Let’s learn all about the monstera, the spider plants, and more that have been in homes for generations!
In this episode, we learn:[05:26] Meet Jane Perrone and learn about her latest book Legends of the Leaf[11:38] Insight into Jane's book and its structure[14:13] What was Jane’s research process in writing her book?[16:47] Was aloe vera part of Cleopatra's beauty routine?[18:19] What is the impact of plants on air quality?[20:13] Where can you find quality indoor and outdoor gardening products?[22:19] Where can you get flower and vegetable transplants to create an effortless garden?[24:13] What is the cultural significance of the Aspidistra plant throughout history?[28:37] How did Aspidistra become a popular houseplant?[30:32] History of the spider plant and its cultural significance[34:23] Are you looking for a book to start your first container garden?[36:23] What is Colonial botany and why was it an important field of study?[39:37] Dark history of Dieffenbachia[46:23] History of the Boston fern and why it became popular[51:40] Why is the monstera plant a must-have for any plant lover?[54:48] Who worked on the illustrations for Jane's book?[58:07] Where can you purchase Jane's book?[01:05:46] Where can you find Jane Perrone on social media?
Mentioned in our conversation:Jane Perrone’s book Legends of the LeafD.G. Hessayon’s book The House Plant ExpertBiodiversity Heritage LibraryGeorge Orwell’s book Keep the Aspidistra FlyingGracie Fields’ song The Biggest Aspidistra In The WorldNetflix film Enola HolmesGerman poet Johann Wolfgang von GoetheAmerican Sitcom Will & GraceNoel Kingsbury’s book The Story of Flowers
For a listicle of our favorite houseplants and their history,check out the full show notes and blog here!
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The First Time Gardener: Container Gardening by Pam FarleyDon't let limited space and gardening anxieties hold you back from growing your own food. Start your very first garden in containers, the easy and affordable way, with the help of Pam Farley's The First Time Gardener: Container Gardening. Learn the basics and requirements of container gardening such as size, water, fertilizer, location, and more with this comprehensive and fully-illustrated book.
Check out Container Gardening at your favorite local b