On The Ledge is a podcast all about indoor gardening - helping you to grow everything from Aloe vera to the ZZ plant. Presenter Jane Perrone has been nuts about houseplants since she was knee high to a Swiss cheese plant. She quizzes the experts, helps you find cool new stuff to grow and figures out how to fix your plant problems. For more information, email firstname.lastname@example.org or visit janeperrone.com.
I chat about the challenges of getting houseplants ready for winter with Stephen and Matthew of the Plant Daddy podcast. Plus, more on the mystery Peperomia from episode 112, and I answer a question on ferns and ivies.
For full show notes visit https://www.janeperrone.com/on-the-ledge/2019/10/18/episode-113-winterising-your-plants-with-the-plant-daddy-podcast.
Plant swaps are a great way to connect with likeminded planty people, offload surplus plants and get your hands on some great new specimens for your collection. I visited two seasoned plant swappers in Sheffield to find out how it’s done - and I also answer a question about a mystery Peperomia.
For full show notes, visit https://www.janeperrone.com/on-the-ledge/2019/10/11/episode-112-plant-swaps.
Listen to a live episode of On The Ledge recorded at the inaugural Cactusworld Live event organised by the British Cactus and Succulent Society (BCSS), with two cactus-loving guests, BCSS patrons Tom Hart Dyke and Anne Swithinbank. Plus, I answer a question about the seed pods of the string of hearts, Ceropegia linearis subsp woodii.
Peperomias are centre stage again this week as we hear part two of my chat with Peperomia expert Sally Williams, learn more about this fascinating group of plants, and get lots of care tips. And I also answer a question about the so-called resurrection plant.
Watermelons, raindrops and turtles … the genus Peperomia contains some of our most popular houseplants: so it’s about time I devoted a couple of episodes to them. I meet Peperomia expert Sally Williams, learn more about this fascinating group of plants, and get lots of care tips. And I also answer a question about a peaky heart leaf fern.
I return from holiday to find a dozen bottles of milk turning into cheese on my doorstop, but the good news is that my houseplants are mostly thriving! I check them out, then discuss the wonderfully tolerant (and tasty!) houseplant that is the falseleaf shamrock aka Oxalis triangularis.
Want to learn how help your houseplants thrive? Jane Perrone's podcast can help. Find a full, thematic list of episodes at https://www.janeperrone.com/on-the-ledge/get-started-with-on-the-ledge-podcast.
I continue the theme of houseplants for beginners this week, as Judy Feldstein of Houseplant411.com presents her ten commandments for houseplant care. I also answer a question about watering habits and fungus gnats.
I love delving into the details of growing houseplants, but this week I’m going back to basics, looking at five houseplants that any newbie grower can get started with. Judy Feldstein of Houseplant411.com joins me to discuss the plants and offer up some tips on their care. Plus, I answer a question about spiny growth on forest cacti with the help of expert Mark Preston.
I love strawberry saxifrage (Saxifraga stolonifera) so much I just had to dedicate a whole episode to this lovely plant: and question of the week concerns the beautiful dark-leaved foliage plant ZZ plant cultivar ‘Raven’.
This episode is the start of an occasional series looking at houseplants and sustainability: I’m starting by looking at peat use - can we find a viable alternative to this non-renewable resource? I talk to Sean Higgs, who's been growing carnivorous plants peat-free for many years. And I answer a question about the aerial roots on a monster Anthurium.
Read full show notes here: https://www.janeperrone.com/on-the-ledge/2019/7/18/episode-103-houseplants-and-sustainability-part-one-peat-free
Red spider mites may not be visible with the naked eye, but they damage they can do to our houseplants is considerable. I get an insight into the world of the spider mite with the help of two entomologists, and find out how to keep houseplants mite-free. And I answer a question about easy trailing plants that are non-toxic to cats.
Read the full show notes here: https://www.janeperrone.com/on-the-ledge/2019/7/12/episode-102-spider-mites
Spider plants are cheap as chips and common as muck, and yet Chlorophytum comosum is also a treasured plant for many houseplant growers. I find out about the wonderful world of the spider plant with guest Darryl Cheng, from which cultivars to choose to how to keep the leaf tips from going brown.
Full show notes at https://www.janeperrone.com/on-the-ledge/2019/7/5/episode-101-spider-plant-chlorophytum.
On The Ledge hits 100 episodes! This week’s show is a celebration of all things OTL: I hear from lots of listeners about how the podcast has impacted on them, count down the top ten most downloaded episodes, and explain some of the things I’ve learned from making the podcast. And - find out how you can enter my giveaway for your chance to win a stylish LED growlight.
See full show notes at https://www.janeperrone.com/on-the-ledge/2019/6/28/episode-100-lets-celebrate.
If you’re suffering from window envy, this is the episode for you! I talk to the Houseplant Guru, Lisa Eldred Steinkopf, about her new book Grow In The Dark, and all the wonderful plants you can grow even in dimly-lit rooms. Plus I answer a question about leaves with red undersides.
Read full show notes here: https://www.janeperrone.com/on-the-ledge/2019/6/21/episode-99-houseplants-for-shady-spots
I explore the botany of houseplant propagation with horticulturist Leslie Halleck. And I answer a question about a floppy calla lily. Read full show notes here: I explore the botany of houseplant propagation with horticulturist Leslie Halleck and answer a question about a floppy calla lily.
Read full show notes here: https://www.janeperrone.com/on-the-ledge/2019/6/13/episode-98-the-science-of-plant-propagation
London-based garden designer Martha Krempel shows me her stunning indoor/outdoor garden, featuring some seriously big plants, including a towering succulent Euphorbia called Pablo. And I ask a question about how listeners document their houseplant care regime.
Read full show notes here:
Jane Perrone chats to Baylor Chapman, author of new book Decorating With Plants and founder of California plant design studio Lila B Design, about plants for the bedroom. We finally smash the myth that houseplants shouldn’t be placed in bedrooms, discuss the challenges of finding plants to suit bedrooms, and put forward some clever ideas to green up your sleeping area without taking up too much room.
In the second part of my interview with Peter D’Amato, founder of the nursery California Carnivores, I get Peter to answer listener questions about Nepenthes, discuss the weird world of naming carnivorous plants, and find out about a very unusual side project Peter has been working on. And I answer a question about a potbound umbrella plant.
I chat to Peter D’Amato, founder of the nursery California Carnivores, one of world’s leading experts in venus flytraps, pitcher plants, sundews and more. We talk about how his obsession began, find out what happens when a rate gets stuck in a giant pitcher, and discover what a ‘crapivore’ is.
Plus - I answer a question about repotting an Anthurium.
I talk to houseplant stylist and Instagram sensation Hilton Carter about his new book Wild At Home, his plants and why indoor gardening is the perfect escape from the stresses of modern life. And I answer a question about a pelargonium with a problem.
I talk to YouTube gardening sensation Huw Richards about growing herbs indoors and answer a question about a Dracaena that’s receiving unwanted attention from a pet. Plus a bonus bit of seed sowing for the OTL sowalong.
From tablets to foliar sprays, choosing what products to use when you fertilise houseplants can seem like a bit of a minefield. Leigh Hunt, the RHS’s principal horticultural advisor, joins me to explain why we need to feed houseplants in the first place, what they need and how to decode those numbers on the back of the packet! Plus I answer a question about aquascaping soil and bring you part four of the On The Ledge sowalong, looking at what to do once your seedlings have emerged.
This week is an On The Ledge sowalong extravaganza! We’re now getting to the nitty gritty - the actual seed sowing bit - so my dog Wolfie and I are off to my potting shed to see what’s sprouting there, plus I have special guest Robert Pavlis to answer a question about using wood ash on houseplants.
African violets have been loved and nurtured by generations of houseplant growers, but they’ve got a reputation as plants that our grandparents love to grow: cute, maybe, but not cool.
That’s changing, though. I talk to African violet grower and show judge Annie Rieck about why she loves these plants, and how to grow them successfully. Plus it's part two of the On The Ledge sowalong: we're talking about equipment. And, a question about variegation and how it affects sun exposure.
Rob Stacewicz’s London home is stuffed with gorgeous houseplants, but most of them are planted in groups. He gives me a tour, and explains why planting more than one specimen in the same container really works. Plus I answer a question about a bird of paradise.
Forest cactus expert Mark Preston returns to talk about propagation, plus Hatiora, Lepismium and Rhipsalis. And I answer a question ahout getting hold of that must-have plant, Christia obcordata aka the butterfly plant.
I am joined by epiphytic cactus expert Mark Preston to talk about how to take care of Christmas, Easter and Thanksgiving cacti, aka Schlumbergera and Rhipsalidopsis. And I answer a question about baby spider plants.
I talk to Scott Cain of Instagram accounts @tropicaloco and @boyswithplants about his houseplant collection, his new book and what it’s like keeping a whole forest of foliage plants alive on an Australian balcony. And I answer a question about a Monstera with dodgy leaves.
Hoyas are shooting up the popularity charts, and so they should: these climbing and trailing vines have lovely foliage and flowers that are otherworldy and sometimes heavenly scented. Doug Chamberlain of Vermont Hoyas joins me to discuss his collection, his favourite species and how to care for these enchanting plants.
ZZ plant or Zamioculcas zamiifolia? Botanical Latin can seem like a confusing alphabet soup that’s hard to say and even harder to figure out. But Latin names help us learn about the history of the plant, who brought it into cultivation and what it looks like. With the help of guests John Wright and Daniel Sparler, this episode helps to demystify botanical Latin, explain why it’s important, and set you on the road to becoming a scholar of plant taxonomy - the science of naming plants.
Michael Perry aka Mr Plant Geek joins me to share some of his insights into the houseplant scene in China, Japan and Thailand, from how much you’d pay for a 6ft Adenium in Thailand to how the Chinese are marketing houseplants to children. Plus I answer a jaw-dropping question from a listener who has a peace lily that’s anything but peaceful…
One of the boons of indoor gardening is that this hobby really doesn’t necessitate a lot of kit: a watering can, some pots and some potting mix will get you started. But as your plant obsession grows, there are some gadgets that will help to keep your leafy charges happy and help you deal with routine maintenance. I highlight some of the gadgets I have found useful, from soil moisture testers to hand lenses. And I answer three questions: about Calatheas, Aloe veras and variegation in Monsteras.
We’ve all been there: the moment when that must-have houseplant leaps off the shelf and into your basket (real or virtual) and you have absolutely no idea how you are going to fit it into your home. In this episode I hear from a couple of listeners - Ehren Wessel and Letty Reynaldo - about their plant addictions, and I chat to hoarding expert Jo Cooke about how to know if you have a problem with hoarding houseplants, and what you can do to improve the situation.
As it’s the final episode of the year, it's time for some fun: Jane Perrone discusses some of the houseplants that embody the Pantone colour of the year for 2019, ‘living coral’; plussome festive houseplant care tips and talk about what’s coming up in 2019 on the podcast.
Whether you’re keeping records of houseplants’ growth or showing them off on social media, taking photographs indoors can be tricky. I speak to three plant photographers to find out their top tips on lighting, framing and focusing your shot - and learn about some simple, inexpensive pieces of kit that can help you up your game. Plus - I answer a question about a Philodendron ‘Pink Princess’ that’s letting its name down by being anything but pink.
You’ve read the headlines, but do houseplants really clean the air in your house? Jane Perrone talks to Curtis Gubb, a scientist who's part of a project to discover whether houseplants really do have a positive effect on air quality, working in partnership with the RHS. They discuss the truth behind the headlines on houseplants and air quality, and whether houseplants are really a route to healthy skin. Plus, a Q&A on tiny ferns for terrariums.
Professional aquascaper George Farmer turned his hobby into a successful career, becoming one of the stars of the aquarium scene. I visited his home in Cambridgeshire to find out where it all began, get some tips on how to get started with your first underwater landscape, and how his love of aquascaping helped him deal with PTSD in the wake of his previous career in active service as an RAF bomb disposal operative.
I recently visited the Netherlands as a guest of The Joy of Plants: this week I’m talking about the plants I saw at the three nurseries we visited the following day - Amstel BV, Ubink and Vireo. Visit janeperrone.com for full show notes.
I recently visited the Netherlands as a guest of The Joy of Plants; it was an informative and fun trip, and a brilliant opportunity to understand the fascinating world of Dutch ornamental plant production. This week I’m talking about the plants I saw at the Flora Holland trade show during day one of the visit. Friend of OTL James Wong was there too so we got to geek out over houseplants together - fun! Visit Janeperrone.com for full show notes.
Dr Chris Thorogood is a botanist at Oxford Botanic Garden with a clever sideline in painting brilliant pictures of the plants he loves and studies: his new book, Weird Plants, is a brilliant book for anyone who wants to delve a bit deeper into some of the strangest corners of the botanical world. I find out from Chris why engineers are studying the slippery qualities of Nepenthes pitchers, which creature uses Low’s pitcher plant as a toilet, and why Stapelia flowers look mouldy.
I normally record On The ledge in my pyjamas with an unwashed face and a mug of tea at ten o’clock at night, so last Friday it was rather a novelty to be at the RHS halls inLondon, it’s rather a fully dressed and mostly clean, with a cocktail in my hand, recording an episode of On The Ledge in front of a live audience.
My guests were Alys Fowler and London-based horticulturist and garden designer Rob Stacewicz, both fellow plant addicts. Visit janeperrone.com for full show notes.
If you’ve listened to episode after episode of Jane Perrone talking about her plants, and have wondered exactly what her plant collection looks like, now is your chance to find out: there's a tour of kitchen and half of my sun room plants with an accompanying video if you visit janeperrone.com, which is also the place to go for full show notes.
It’s the time of year when we do the houseplant shuffle - that desperate effort to get all the houseplants safely inside before they are ripped apart by winter winds or rendered crinkly with an overnight frost. In this episode I demonstrate how I get a plant ready to come inside, and talk to Norwegian nursery owner and houseplant collector Tommy Tonsberg about how he gets his plants through the long winter.
The first challenge with this plant is mastering its Latin name! The genus Epiphyllum belongs to the forest or orchid cacti, named for their orchid-like stems. Anguliger means ‘angle bearing’ and if you’ve seen the flattened stems of this plant you’ll know why! Its striking zigzag or ric rac patterns make E. anguliger a popular feature on Instagram. Find out how to care for this plant in the final part in On The Ledge's trailing plants week.
Sedum morganianum was a bit of a botanical mystery until ten years ago. Part six of trailing plants week examines how the mystery was solved, and how to look after this charismatic and popular trailing succulent. See janeperrone.com for full show notes.
As the Latin name suggests, in its native Brazil this tiny Peperomia grows by creeping around on the ground and along tree bark. That said, it grows brilliantly as a trailing pot plant, and is so diminutive that it’s perfect for keeping ‘on the ledge’. Find out how to look after this plant with host Jane Perrone.
Visit janeperrone.com for full show notes and more from trailing plants week.
The flame violet holds its own among any variegated plant you can name, and yet for some reason they are not as popular as they should be! These members of the Gesneriad clan grow in central America where they tend to romp around at ground level, but they also make brilliant trailing plants. Find out more about these stunning trailing plants in part four of trailing plants week on On The Ledge.
Visit Janeperrone.com for full show notes.
Today's focus for trailing plants week is an easy-to-please, hard-to-kill plant with curious flowers and gorgeous silvery heart-shaped leaves. Find out more with your host Jane Perrone. Visit janeperrone.com for full show notes.
Find out more about this tree-dwelling Hoya from the Himalayas that dangles from trees like green furry tinsel. Jane Perrone brings you background info, care tips and more to help you keep your Hoya linearis looking good. For full show note, visit janeperrone.com.
It’s trailing plants week! We’re looking at seven iconic trailing plants across the week, in bite-sized daily mini-episodes. First up: string of pearls, aka Senecio rowleyanus.
Visit janeperrone.com for full show notes.
You’ve gathered an awesome collection of houseplants, but what next? Propagation - the art and science of making more plants from the ones you already have - is a great way of getting to know your plants better, bulking up your collection and providing gifts for friends and family.
I interview Rose Ray and Caro Langton of green interiors firm Ro Co about their new book on propagation, Root, Nurture, Grow. Visit janeperrone.com for full show notes.
In this episode I find out how to look after moth orchids properly from watering to repotting with Raffaele Di Lallo, take a visit Double H Nurseries, the huge orchid nursery on the south coast in England, to find out about the latest developments in orchid breeding, and offer up an extended Q&A with orchid expert Susanne Masters.
Darryl Cheng - timelapse photographer extraordinaire, Instagram maven and houseplant doctor - is my guest this week.We discuss everything from why instructions to grow a plant in ‘bright indirect light’ doesn’t really help houseplant growers to the dangers of anthropomorphising plants. I also answer a listener question about a Hoya that's dropping flower buds. Read the full show notes for this episode at janeperrone.com.
I'm joined by palm expert Scott Zona to discuss some of the most commonly available palms to grow as houseplants, find out how to look after them, and investigate some of the more unusual members of the clan. And I answer a listener question about a cactus that's refusing to produce new prickles. Visit my show notes at janeperrone.com for full details of all the plants mentioned in this episode.
Coleus make fabulous indoor plants and come in a fascinating range of shapes and colours, from 'Dark Chocolate' to 'Pink Chaos'.
I talked to Kelly Norris, director of horticulture and education at the Greater Des Moines Botanical Garden, about the garden's incredible Coleus collection, find out why Coleus goes under so many different names including Solenostemon and Plectranthus, and discuss how to overwinter Coleus indoors.
Leslie Halleck's book Gardening Under Lights (published by Timber Press) is a really welcome book for those of us who haven't fully dipped our toes into the confusing world of artificial light for our plants. I talk to Leslie I find out about what kind of light houseplants need, investigate the pros and cons of the difference types from LECs to LEDs and beyond, and discuss how cannabis growing fits into the picture. Visit janeperrone.com for full show notes.
Carnivorous plants don't get more colourful, clever and downright dramatic than the tropical pitcher plants, aka Nepenthes. Domonick Gravine, founder of Nepenthes nursery RedLeaf Exotics, has been running his business for about 18 months now, bringing Nepenthes to a whole new generation of growers. I talk to him about his favourite plants and how to care for them.
Colin Walker has been growing succulents for 50 years, and he just happens to be the president of the British Cactus and Succulent Society. I interviewed him this week to find out about his two specialisms, Aloes and Agaves, and also found out about his penchant for putting succulents in odd containers such as teapots - and why cat litter can help with your succulent propagation (as long as you get the right type). Visit my show notes at janeperrone.com for full details of this episode.
Ferns. Love them, hate them, want them to go away and stop taunting you with their crispy leaves? This week I am attempting to give serial fern killers hope by discussing some tips and tricks to keep ferns happy, interviewing someone who's got their fern game sorted, and naming some of the species I find just that bit easier to keep alive. Visit janeperrone.com for full show notes.
This episode looks at some really quick and easy projects for indoor growers that take two to five minutes to complete, and (mostly) use items that you may well have in your food cupboards, or can be bought from your local market. Includes how to get the most from supermarket herbs, rooting lemongrass stalks, growing Colocasia from corms, and sprouting pea shoots.
I had so much fun and fascinating stuff to chat about with expert botanist and houseplant maverick James Wong that I am bringing you another chunk of our chat this week. We check out his incredible waterlily nano pond made from a glass fruit bowl, his Avatar-inspired aquarium and living wall, his fishbowl terrarium and more. Visit janeperrone.com for full show notes.
British-Malaysian botanist James Wong is sparking a one-man houseplant revolution. With no outside space to garden, for the last 18 months James has been focusing all his horticultural energies into many fascinating plant experiments inside his small London flat.
If you've ever wondered how he made a coffee table terrarium or a mini green wall in a display unit, or where he sources his tiny aquarium plants from this week's episode has all the answers for you. See janeperrone.com for the full show notes.
I speak to Dale Martens of the Gesneriad Society to find out everything from why Petrocosmeas are so cute to why breeding your own Streptocarpus may just involve a trip to the dentist (really).
Visit janeperrone.com for full show notes.
Behind an unassuming bungalow near Poole in Dorset, Mike Clifford's garden may measure up to just 65ft long, but it's absolutely packed full of wonderful plants, both in greenhouses and outside. I get a tour from Mike, and find out about some of his favourite begonias and carnivorous plants. And I answer a question about precautionary pest treatments.
Buying plants online is ridiculously easy - a few clicks and some fancy foliage plant or flowery specimen is on its way to you in the post. But it's a process that's fraught with potential problems. In this episode I offer up my tips for buying online and plant swaps by post. I also chat to Paul Holt, creative director of N1 and W6 garden centres in London, to get some tips on what to do when you visit a plant shop in person, and answer a listener question about a peaky Syngonium.
Matthew Biggs (@plantmadman on Twitter) is a legendary British gardener, writer and broadcaster, and delightfully for On The Ledge, he's also a big fan of indoor gardening too. I talk to Matt about finding the right spot for your houseplant, why Gloxinias are the Barbara Cartland of the houseplant world, and what we'll be getting up to at Gardeners' World Live on June 14. And I answer a question about red edges on moth orchid leaves.
Find full show notes at janeperrone.com
The Chelsea flower show is the world's most famous gardening event, but houseplants are starting to make big inroads into this fixture in the horticultural calendar. I visited the show to check out the indoor gardening displays in the Great Pavilion, and met up with friend of the show Alys Fowler. Visit janeperrone.com for full show notes and images.
Whether you're a hashtag natural or tend to get your #Monsteramonday mixed up with #philodendronfriday, Instagram is a bit of a jungle for houseplant lovers: fun to negotiate but sometimes rather confusing. I talk to Kimberley Aston aka @kingstreetjungle, a houseplant lover of the Instagram generation and one of the faces behind smash hit accounts @philomemedron and @therealhouseplantsof_ig. Visit janeperrone.com for full episode notes.
The Temperate House at Kew is a huge Victorian glasshouse that's home to thousands of plants from temperate climes, including many plants you'd recognise from your collections.
The Temperate House reopened to the public last week after a five-year restoration programme, so I went along to see the transformation: I get excited about a gully of tree ferns, interview with Kew horticulturist Jess Snowball, and later in the show you can hear a Q&A about repotting a bird's nest fern.
One of the many satisfying things about succulents is just how easy they are to propagate: this week I take a look at how to propagate succulents from existing plant material, aka cuttings (take a listen back to On The Ledge episode 36 for information on sowing from seed). And I answer questions about a jade plant with a split in its stem, and offer suggestions for small plants for a bedroom shelf.
So, you've ended up with a home full of houseplants, but how do you display them to make the most of their best features? I talk to North London-based interior designer and houseplant enthusiast Emilie Fournet about statement plants, why the fiddle leaf fig is the plant of the moment, how to match pots with plants, and when it's absolutely OK to use fake plants (yes really!).
When Alice Vincent asked me to take part in a panel discussion at the Garden Museum about houseplant trends past, present and future, I couldn't have been more excited, and when I heard my fellow speaker was Catherine Horwood I nearly bit her hand off. This week you can hear the discussion that took place.
It all started with a single fiddle leaf fig. Now Summer Rayne Oakes has hundreds of houseplants in her Brooklyn apartment, plus a chicken. Yes a chicken! I talk to Summer Rayne about how it all began, how to keep maidenhair ferns alive, the cool things you can grow in a vivarium, and why chickens and Calatheas don't mix in this week's show.
The Maranta group, aka the prayer plants, all share an incredible plant superpower: they can open and shut their leaves. They're also one of THE houseplants of the moment, because they all have intricately patterned leaves that the current generation of houseplant fans just love. This is my rundown of the four clans of Maranta, plus I answer a question about a cactus with brown spots.
I have heard from so many cat owners who find their pets just can't stay away from their plants: either they're chewing them, or pulling them out of their pots, or finding some other way to destroy that cool jungle vibe you've been cultivating. So this episode is dedicating to giving cat owners some help in keeping cats and plants equally content.
I talk to Matt Candeias, host of botanically brilliant podcast In Defense of Plants about everything from why we're both serial Begonia killers to why his family have finally stopped buying him moth orchids for his birthday.
I blabber on about houseplants every week on On The Ledge, but I thought it was about time I gave you a room-by-room account of the houseplants I own. I start this week with the kitchen, where I have more than 25 plants on the go at the moment.
In early January I made a resolution for 2018 that I would grow as many houseplants from seed as possible. Fast forward a month and a half and I'm devoting a whole episode to the topic of growing your own houseplants from seed. I look at what you need to get started; what water, compost and containers to use; how to sow and what to do once your seed germinate.
Kevin Espiritu of epicgardening.com gives the lowdown on what hydroponics is, how it works and what you need to get started. Plus a listener question about an unhappy fern.
For full show notes visit https://www.janeperrone.com/on-the-ledge/2018/2/9/episode-35-hydroponics.
In her day job, Isabel Hardman is immersed in the serious world of politics, but she's also a botany nut. That's why she set up the #wildflowerhour weekly chat on Twitter. I chat to her about why houseplants bring her contentment, why living next to Kew gardens is a nightmare, and why I am responsible for her growing houseplant addiction.
Venus flytraps - Latin name Dionea muscipula - are fascinating, fun, but infuriating when they just won't stay alive for long. I turned to Tom Bennet of Tom's Carnivores for some excellent advice on the conditions they need.
Read the full show notes here: https://www.janeperrone.com/on-the-ledge/2018/1/18/episode-32-the-venus-flytrap
The Tradescantia group isn't some kind of sketchy set of illuminati figures worthy of a Dan Brown novel, it's a group of houseplants with a plethora of different names: inch plants, spiderworts, purple heart, teddy bear vine, and more. Find out how to look after them, which ones to choose and what to do when things go wrong, from spider mite to spindly stems.
Visit https://www.janeperrone.com/on-the-ledge/2018/1/12/episode-31-the-tradescantia-group for full show notes.
What's on your houseplant wishlist for 2018? I share my plans for the coming year, and pass on plant-related resolutions from listeners and other gardening podcasters, including Ben Dark of the Garden Log podcast, Peter Donegan of the Sod Show, and Isabel Hardman of the Wild Flower Half Hour podcast.
When days are short, gloomy and cold, there's a lot to be said for fixating on your indoor plants. And Christmas is a great excuse to treat yourself to some new plants: be it something traditional such as poinsettias and Christmas cactus, or something a bit more, well, trendy, like terrariums and succulents.
Lisa Eldred Steinkopf is the Houseplant Guru: she describes herself as being a little obsessed with houseplants although I know that she’s under-exaggerating for effect! I chatted to Lisa about her huge plant collection, why there’s no such thing as a black thumb, and why feeding sick plants is a bad idea.
The thrill of buying new houseplants quickly turns to horror when the plant promptly drops all its leaves once you get it home. Jane Perrone gives her top tips for taking care of newly-bought houseplants, from the shop to your shelf. And a question about a floppy Aloe vera prompts a bit of a singalong...
Houseplants come, houseplants go, but there are some that stick with you through thick and thin. I've talked to people about the longlived leafy friends: where they came from, how they kept them going and what they mean to them.
It's easy to overwater houseplants, especially at this time of year when many of them are having a rest, temperatures and light levels are lower and less water's required. In this episode, I look at a few of the thorny issues around watering, such as whether it's better to water with rainwater or tap water, what temperature the water should be, and how to tell if your houseplants need watering in the first place.
My guest this week is Mr Plant Geek, aka Michael Perry. We discuss the big trends in houseplants, why we should be growing cacti from seed, and why mainstream media still haven't latched on to indoor gardening. Plus a Q&A on a ponytail palm with an identity crisis.
Alys Fowler is a gardener and garden writer who I first met when she became the gardening columnist at the Guardian, and I was gardening editor. Her new book on houseplants, Plant Love, is out now - I visited her at home to talk about why top-selling houseplants are like tights, how Instagram has made variegated leaves popular and why propagating cuttings in water works (despite my doubts).