100 books like The Complete Book of Ferns

By Mobee Weinstein,

Here are 100 books that The Complete Book of Ferns fans have personally recommended if you like The Complete Book of Ferns. Shepherd is a community of 10,000+ authors and super readers sharing their favorite books with the world.

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

Maria Colletti Author Of Terrariums - Gardens Under Glass: Designing, Creating, and Planting Modern Indoor Gardens

From my list on indoor gardening houseplant.

Why am I passionate about this?

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. 

Maria's book list on indoor gardening houseplant

Maria Colletti Why did Maria love 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.

By Patricia Buzo,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked A Family Guide to Terrariums for Kids as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Design, plant, and grow a world of your very own—inside a terrarium! Including 15 unique, imagination-inspiring project plans, each accompanied by adorable, full-color photographs, kids and their grown-ups will discover how easy terrariums are to plant and grow. 

*As featured in The New York Times*

Kids love to create, imagine, and have fun. Nothing fulfills all three of those desires quite like designing and planting a terrarium. With the step-by-step project instructions found in A Family Guide to Terrariums for Kids, the results are beautiful, inspiring, and confidence-building. Making these little landscapes develops motor skills, spacial awareness, and provides a…


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

Maria Colletti Author Of Terrariums - Gardens Under Glass: Designing, Creating, and Planting Modern Indoor Gardens

From my list on indoor gardening houseplant.

Why am I passionate about this?

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. 

Maria's book list on indoor gardening houseplant

Maria Colletti Why did Maria love 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.

By Marc Hachadourian,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Orchid Modern as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Orchids have always inspired passion. Their exotic flowers and vibrant colours draw people in, but their reputation as fussy and difficult to grow keep many houseplant fans from adding them to their home decor. But orchids can be easy to grow and Marc Hachadourian, the curator of the orchid collection at the New York Botanical Garden, details exactly how in his new book. Orchid Modern includes basic information on potting, watering, and care. Hachadourian profiles the top 100 plant picks, focusing on varieties that are readily available and easy to grow. Step-by-step projects, including a jewel orchid terrarium, an orchid…


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

Maria Colletti Author Of Terrariums - Gardens Under Glass: Designing, Creating, and Planting Modern Indoor Gardens

From my list on indoor gardening houseplant.

Why am I passionate about this?

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. 

Maria's book list on indoor gardening houseplant

Maria Colletti Why did Maria love 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!

By Stephanie Rose,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Regenerative Garden as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Discover how to work with nature, instead of against it, by employing permaculture techniques to create a garden that is not just more beautiful and productive, but also more resilient.

While the word permaculture might sound intimidating, the principals behind it are not. The main goal of permaculture is to turn your space into a functioning ecosystem that’s less reliant on external resources and better able to sustain itself through many seasons of growth and change as it resists pests, diseases, and climate extremes. Whatever the size of your space, from a tiny patio garden to a big backyard, and…


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

Maria Colletti Author Of Terrariums - Gardens Under Glass: Designing, Creating, and Planting Modern Indoor Gardens

From my list on indoor gardening houseplant.

Why am I passionate about this?

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. 

Maria's book list on indoor gardening houseplant

Maria Colletti Why did Maria love 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!

By Tovah Martin,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Indestructible Houseplant as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Houseplants are the bane of many homeowners. How can you keep them alive and stop them looking leggy, anaemic and unattractive. In this practical and beautifully photographed book, author, Tovah Martin, author of the Unexpected Houseplant recommends which plants to choose and how to put them together into attractive low-maintenance displays.


Book cover of The Heyday of Natural History, 1820-1870

Michael Layland Author Of In Nature's Realm: Early Naturalists Explore Vancouver Island

From my list on the history of natural history.

Why am I passionate about this?

In Nature’s Realm is my third book on the theme of exploration of Vancouver Island, my home for the past thirty years, and my first focussed on the history of natural history. In it, I call upon decades of experience in mapping hitherto scarcely known parts of the world, combined with a keen fascination with the fauna and flora of the many places where I have lived and worked. I have marvelled at the work of the exploring naturalists and am fascinated with their personal histories. I find it enthralling how they each added to the sum of human knowledge of the wonders of the natural world, now so sadly threatened.

Michael's book list on the history of natural history

Michael Layland Why did Michael love this book?

I found this delightful, well-written account of great interest and reference. It covers the widespread passion for all aspects of natural history during the Victorian era, how the collectors of ferns, seashells, birds’ eggs, and skins, butterflies, beetles, orchids, and all manner of curiosities from the natural world, pursued their hobbies. This general acceptance by society led to the formation of clubs, articles, and even specialist journals and popular lectures by amateurs and scientists.

Beautifully illustrated, this book, even though constrained in its timeframe, provides a wonderful introduction to the topic. Since I cover many of the people and motives included here, I much enjoyed another writer’s perspective on them.

By Lynn Barber,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Heyday of Natural History, 1820-1870 as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

First American Edition. "Generously illustrated and impeccably researched, "The Heyday of Natural History" is a highly informative look at a fascinating slice of Victorian culture and scientific history, and the scholars of the Victorian period will find it illuminating. . .Lynn Barber writes primarily for the general reader, and no one can fail to enjoy her witty style, and the rich gallery of eccentrics she describes."


Book cover of The Nature-Printer: A Tale of Industrial Espionage, Ferns and Roofing-Lead

Chris Thorogood Author Of Weird Plants

From my list on to immerse you in plants.

Why am I passionate about this?

My life has always been intertwined with plants. As a kid I would explore the old cemetery behind our back garden, where I would climb trees and swing from branches, pretending I was in the rainforest. I amassed quite a collection of natural history books too. I’d pore over them, memorise the names of the plants they contained, and copy the pictures, scribble them all down on paper; I think I always knew I would write and illustrate books myself one day. Today, as a botanist, I am fortunate to see beautiful plants in their natural habitats all around the world. I seek to capture the beauty I see in words. 

Chris' book list on to immerse you in plants

Chris Thorogood Why did Chris love this book?

This little book is a thing of beauty and I just find it spell-binding. Talented artist and printmaker Pia Östlund describes how she makes a curious discovery: a set of prints in the library of Chelsea Physic Garden in London. This leads her to rediscover the lost technique of nature-printing, while her co-author Simon Prett explores the history of this little-known art. Little snippets about fern hunting and facsimiles of fern fronds and seaweeds make this irresistible – the kind of book I’d dip into on a lazy Saturday morning over coffee, then struggle to dip back out of!  

By Simon Prett, Pia Östlund,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Nature-Printer as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.


Book cover of Hank Finds an Egg

Adam B. Ford Author Of Ryder, Sky, and Emmaline

From my list on children's stories with a magical sense of place.

Why am I passionate about this?

I never stopped reading children’s books and started writing my own when I hit the age of 40. I gravitate toward crisp drawing styles and illustrations that bring out the magic in the everyday. These books are a few of my favorites.

Adam's book list on children's stories with a magical sense of place

Adam B. Ford Why did Adam love this book?

This story stands out from other children’s books because it is told wordlessly entirely with photographs.

The stuffed bear Hank, as the title suggests, finds an egg and has to figure out where it belongs. The details in the real sets are a joy to see and the story is told effortlessly with wonderful studio photographs.

By Rebecca Dudley,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Hank Finds an Egg as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

While walking through the woods, Hank finds an egg all alone on the forest floor. Spotting its home high up in a tree, Hank diligently tries to return the egg to its nest, but is met with failure each time. After keeping the egg warm overnight, he returns to the scene the next morning. To his surprise, he is met by another forest creature. Will they find a way together to see the egg safely home? Artist Rebecca Dudley crafts each tiny leaf, flower, and creature that appears in Hank's forest in breathtaking detail, bringing the sunlit woods to life.…


Book cover of Man-Eaters of Kumaon

Adam Hart Author Of The Deadly Balance: Predators and People in a Crowded World

From my list on books that capture our place in nature.

Why am I passionate about this?

I cannot remember a time when I wasn’t captured by nature. Growing up in coastal Devon, UK, I loved immersing myself, sometimes literally, in the landscapes and nature of my surroundings. It was inevitable I would become a biologist, and I think also inevitable that I would be drawn to the field of ecology, the study of the relationships that exist within nature. I have expanded my horizons over the past decade or so, developing a deep love for the landscapes and nature of southern Africa, but the rockpools and lanes of Devon are never far away.

Adam's book list on books that capture our place in nature

Adam Hart Why did Adam love this book?

A book about hunting tigers might seem an odd choice, but I never tire of reading Jim Corbett’s first-hand account of tracking down man-eaters in India in the early 1900s. Corbett’s tracking and jungle skills were second to none, and his writing is both clear and richly descriptive.

His empathy for the rural poor of India, his respect for tigers, and his love of landscape come through so loudly it is as if you can hear him talking right at you. Corbett’s job was to kill problem tigers, and he was very good at his job. But he did a great deal to protect them, and the first National Park in India was named in his honour.

I love how, more than anyone, Corbett shows how complex conservation can be and how important people are in the overall picture.

By Jim Corbett,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Man-Eaters of Kumaon as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Her tracks now–as she carried away the girl–led into the wilderness of rocks, some acres in extent, where the going was both difficult and dangerous. The cracks and chasms in between the rocks were masked with ferns, blackberry vines, and a false step, which might easily have resulted in a broken limb, would have been fatal. Progress under these conditions was of necessity slow, and the tigress was taking advantage of it to continue her meal. A dozen times I found where she had rested, and after each of these rests, the blood trail became more distinct.

This was her…


Book cover of Oaxaca Journal

Sonia Day Author Of The Mexico Lunch Party -- A Sisters of the Soil Novel. With Recipes

From my list on the amazing world of plants.

Why am I passionate about this?

During two decades as a gardening columnist for the Toronto Star, I wrote about hundreds of different plants. I also penned, for various publishers, over half a dozen books with titles ranging from Incredible Edibles: 40 Fun Things to Grow in the City and The Untamed Garden: A Revealing Look at our Love Affair with Plants. And in doing so, I got hooked. Even if you aren’t interested in gardening, the botanical world is chock-a-block with terrific stories. My new novel, for instance, published in 2022, begins with an extraordinary tale about a plant called The Corpse Flower which bloomed for the first time in 70 years at Brooklyn Botanical Garden.

Sonia's book list on the amazing world of plants

Sonia Day Why did Sonia love this book?

A modest little paperback which is charming because Sacks writes so well about anything and everything. When he wasn’t delving into our grey matter, the famous New York neurologist (who died recently) happened to be an amateur botanist, with a particular passion for ferns. In this book, he visits the Mexican city of Oaxaca, travels the surrounding countryside with a like-minded group and records in a diary his thoughts about the plants and people he encounters. The vignettes are well told, colourful and a delight to read. 

By Oliver Sacks,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Oaxaca Journal as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Oliver Sacks is a neurologist and also a member of the American Fern Society. This is his spellbinding account of his recent trip with a group of fellow fern enthusiasts to the beautiful, history-steeped province of Oaxaca. A captivating evocation of a place, its people, its plants and its myriad wonders.


Book cover of Kabinett & Kammer: Creating Authentic Interiors

Joanna Maclennan Author Of The Foraged Home

From my list on inspiring creating your own unique home or space.

Why am I passionate about this?

I am mainly known as an Interiors Photographer and although accidentally falling into photographing Interiors, it has become a passion, always interested in the story these places tell and alongside my husband we have built our own home creating a unique space using recuperated materials. As part of my work, I am always looking for interesting and inspirational books and places. It is how I train my eye, drawn to the unusual. I am as happy photographing a chateau in Provence as I am in a small and remote cabin in Norway. 

Joanna's book list on inspiring creating your own unique home or space

Joanna Maclennan Why did Joanna love this book?

This book is one of my most recent purchases. I really love Sean Scherer’s style and it speaks to both myself and my husband.

The photography is great in this book and Sean has a wonderful eye for detail. It’s a feast for the eyes. It has that ‘cabinet de curiosité’ style and so many details I want to keep looking at. I have visited the Catskills area and this book certainly makes me want to go back there again. It is a well-thought-out and inspiring book.

By Sean Scherer, William Abranowicz (photographer),

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Kabinett & Kammer as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Interior designer, artist, and collector Sean Scherer shares his secrets about applying the principles of two-dimensional art to home design

Sean Scherer’s Kabinett & Kammeris equally a celebration and a guide to both collecting and showing how lively design can integrate disparate objects into beautifully layered ensembles. Scherer’s interiors feature vintage display cabinets housing discarded collections of whittled songbirds, stunning 19th-century maps and school teaching aids, ferns in cast-iron planters, and photomurals. The effect is a supercharged nod to American Gothic heightened by Scherer’s sophisticated palette and sense of proportion. Each photograph by William Abranowicz is a lesson on color…


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