Sunday, July 26, 2020

Houseplants for All: A Guide to Becoming a Perfect Plant Parent

Houseplants for All is a tutorial and culture guide to indoor houseplants by Danae Horst. Due out 11th Aug 2020 from Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, it's 208 pages and will be available in hardcover and ebook formats.

The first thing that struck me about this book is how positive and upbeat and encouraging the author's voice is. It's a really happy book full of healthy vibrant plants. There's a 'you can do it' vibe. The second thing I noticed is how much information is packed into the pages. It's a really information dense book but so well arranged that it doesn't feel like a huge info-dump; the info is accessible and understandable.

The layout is easy to read and follow as well as graphically appealing.  The book's well illustrated with lots of relevant color photos. The author covers choosing and siting plants to fit decor needs as well as the culture needs of the plants themselves. There are good illustrations of each of the concepts she introduces (what _is_ indirect light, how can plants be situated to make the most of light without getting burned by having too much of it, what's humidity, how much is enough, what's too much, etc). There are some simple worksheets to help readers figure out in practical terms what they have to work with.  The provided room profiles provide some more definite criteria to consider when choosing and siting plants. There is a plant primer with specific species including their botanical and common names, color photos of each plant, culture requirements and habits.

The author has included a good overview of tools and supplies also: choosing pots, drainage, materials, soils (one of the best treatments I've seen in a home/hobby book), potting tutorials, watering, pruning, fertilizing, cleaning, propagation, and troubleshooting problems.

Well written and factual. Five stars.

Disclosure: I received an ARC at no cost from the author/publisher for review purposes.

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