Skip to main content

Book Review: The Unexpected Houseplant

The Unexpected Houseplant
220 Extraordinary Choices for Every Spot in Your Home
by Tovah Martin

The Unexpected Houseplant

326 pages
Timber Press, 2012
List price: $22.95

Just as the title suggests, you’ll find Martin’s unlikely houseplant suggestions to be a refreshing departure from the usual. Organized according to season, she presents a different palette for each, depending on the performance of the plant choices. Tropical plants are likely candidates for growing indoors, and we’ve been doing that for years. But how about your outdoor perennials? Many of those can be grown indoors, too.

Martin writes in a conversational style, guiding us through the seasons, explaining care and suggesting displays. She clearly knows her subject well and speaks of it with endearment, encouraging us to be daring and different as we take the garden indoors. You might be tempted at first glance to think that the plant profiles are formulaic, giving standard facts, but you really should read them in detail because in just about every one, you’ll learn something about gardening in general.

This isn’t just another book on houseplants; it’s an invitation to adventure.

Tovah Martin is a freelance writer, lecturer, horticulturist, and TV media personality whose work appears regularly in many national publications. She is the author of over a dozen gardening books, including bestsellers The New Terrarium and Tasha Tudor's Garden.

Read more garden book reviews.
Read Kylee Baumle’s blog, Our Little Acre.