The best indoor gardening houseplant books

Who am I?

I have spent 25 years working at the New York Botanical Garden! My life’s pursuit of the green has been my greatest achievement. I'm a self-made terrarium designer. I developed my style and skills at NYBG and knew that I had to share this with the world. My books have sold over 14,000 copies worldwide. This is amazing to me and has taught me that my though-ness and step-by-step lessons were worth every word! Horticulture is a subject that comes naturally to me. I happily know the names of dozens and dozens of trees, shrubs, perennials, annuals, tropical, desert, you name plants from all over the world and I’m learning new ones every season. 


I wrote...

Terrariums - Gardens Under Glass: Designing, Creating, and Planting Modern Indoor Gardens

By Maria Colletti,

Book cover of Terrariums - Gardens Under Glass: Designing, Creating, and Planting Modern Indoor Gardens

What is my book about?

Traveling Workshop Instructor Maria Colletti makes designing your very own interior gardens easy with step-by-step photos of over twenty of her own terrarium designs. Plus, you'll get all the information you need about popular terrarium plants, such as tillandsias (air plants), orchids, mosses, succulents, and ferns.

Growing collections of adorable miniature plants in glass vessels is a great way to bring the outdoors inside and get back in touch with nature—no matter where you live or what time of year it is. Terrariums are a wondrous combination of nature, gardening, and home decor. Whether you reside in a tiny apartment, spend the bulk of your day at an office desk, or just want to be better connected to green living things. Terrarium building and tending are both therapeutic and inspirational.

The books I picked & why

Shepherd is reader supported. We may earn an affiliate commission when you buy through links on our website. This is how we fund this project for readers and authors (learn more).

A Family Guide to Terrariums for Kids: Imagination-Inspiring Projects to Grow a World in Glass - Build a Mini Ecosystem!

By Patricia Buzo,

Book cover of A Family Guide to Terrariums for Kids: Imagination-Inspiring Projects to Grow a World in Glass - Build a Mini Ecosystem!

Why this book?

Patricia has a distinct design that is breath-taking. Her moss creations are pure images of botany at its best. She herself is an experienced botanist and she shares all she has learned in her book for you to utilize. She knows her subject and her how-tos are informative and easy to do at home. This is a great gift for anyone in your life.


The Complete Book of Ferns: Indoors • Outdoors • Growing • Crafting • History & Lore

By Mobee Weinstein,

Book cover of The Complete Book of Ferns: Indoors • Outdoors • Growing • Crafting • History & Lore

Why this book?

Mobee has literally spent her professional life at New York Botanical Garden. She knows everything!  Ferns are her expertise. This book is beautifully put together with her creative prowess! She really knows so much about the art of fern growing. I also find her to be a  terrific instructor and her book is a complete access to all she knows. Her projects are wonderful and I actually bought a galvanized wall hanging to plant ferns in just like hers!

Inspiration at its best is mimicry.


Orchid Modern: Living and Designing with the World's Most Elegant Houseplants

By Marc Hachadourian,

Book cover of Orchid Modern: Living and Designing with the World's Most Elegant Houseplants

Why this book?

Marc is brilliant! His extensive knowledge of all things orchids and tropical plants is unending. He has dedicated his career to the horticultural expertise of Orchids.

His professional career and rise to curator of Glasshouses and Orchids at New York Botanical Garden is legendary.

In this book, he shares all care tips, creative projects, and visuals of beauty.

He has these gorgeous terrarium projects that I just had to try to copy.


The Regenerative Garden: 80 Practical Projects for Creating a Self-Sustaining Garden Ecosystem

By Stephanie Rose,

Book cover of The Regenerative Garden: 80 Practical Projects for Creating a Self-Sustaining Garden Ecosystem

Why this book?

Stephanie has taught me so much about gardening that I didn't even know I needed to know. Her beautiful lessons about permaculture, a word that I didn't understand what it meant until Stephanie took the time to teach me! This is a must-need book in your gardening library.

She has created a beautiful garden of her own where she time-tests all her teachings. The climate in Vancouver Canada makes this a great environment. Stephanie and I became friends years ago when she started her blog and she has promoted my work on several occasions.

I trust her judgment and know she knows her subject and then some!


The Indestructible Houseplant: 200 Beautiful Plants that Everyone Can Grow

By Tovah Martin,

Book cover of The Indestructible Houseplant: 200 Beautiful Plants that Everyone Can Grow

Why this book?

Tovah Martin is my houseplant hero! Tovah is a rare bird! Her love of houseplants rings through her writing. She has made gardening and indoor plants her life’s pursuit and it shows. This book is one of several Tovah has written. Her work often appears in Better Homes & Gardens magazine. I have followed her career from day one. Her vision of the plant is joyful and information only someone with this great love of the houseplant can share with you. If you buy one book on how to care for and incorporate the beauty of green plants in your home you must read Tovah's book!


5 book lists we think you will like!

Interested in houseplants, gardening, and gardens?

5,716 authors have recommended their favorite books and what they love about them. Browse their picks for the best books about houseplants, gardening, and gardens.

Houseplants Explore 14 books about houseplants
Gardening Explore 68 books about gardening
Gardens Explore 29 books about gardens

And, 3 books we think you will enjoy!

We think you will like The Random House Book of Indoor and Greenhouse Plants Vol. 1, Urban Jungle, and The Indoor Garden Book if you like this list.