Now through July 31, The Fernseed in Proctor is participating in Homestead Brooklyn’s Plant Shop Pub Crawl. What does this mean for you? When you bring in your copy of the new book “How to Make a Plant Love You: Cultivate Green Space in Your Home and Heart” by Summer Rayne Oakes, you’ll receive 15 percent off your purchase of up to $100. And you can do this up to five times in the month of July. Don’t have a copy yet? Pick one up at King’s Books (218 St. Helens Ave., Tacoma) – they have copies currently in stock.
The Fernseed is the only Tacoma plant shop taking part in this event to support and celebrate local plant shops, garden centers and nurseries. Playing off the popular “pub crawls” concept in which revelers imbibe in adult beverages, the Plant Shop Pub Crawl invites you to “imbibe” in plants. That’s part of how the Plant Shop Pub Crawl was born (“pub” being short for “publication”). More than 100 brick-and-mortar plant purveyors across nine countries have signed up to participate in the crawl and salute the release of “How to Make a Plant Love You.”
Author Summer Rayne Oakes, an urban houseplant expert and environmental scientist, is the icon of wellness-minded millennials who want to bring nature indoors, according to a New York Times profile. Oakes has managed to grow 1,000 houseplants in her Brooklyn apartment (and they’re thriving!) Her secret? She approaches her relationships with plants as intentionally as if they were people.
Her website www.HomesteadBrooklyn.com continues to gain new followers almost daily. “‘Homestead Brooklyn’ is my attempt to help us become more attuned to nature in the city through the simple things: a potted plant, a farmers market apple, or even a walk through the botanical gardens,” she writes at the website. “I have a love for plants (if you can’t tell), so I focus on gardening indoors and outdoors, low-waste to zero-waste living, cooking healthy meals (including from what we grow and forage), and traveling with a purpose.”
Oakes believes that everyone deserves to feel the inner peace that comes from taking care of greenery. Beyond the obvious benefits – beauty and cleaner air – there’s a strong psychological benefit to nurturing plants as a path to mindfulness. They can reduce our stress level, lower our blood pressure, and improve our overall outlook. And they offer a rare opportunity to find joy by caring for another living being.
When Oakes moved to Brooklyn from the Pennsylvania countryside, she knew that bringing nature indoors was her only chance to stay sane. She found living things to grow by the side of the road, in long-forgotten window boxes, at farmers markets, and in local garden shops. She found ways to shelve, hang, tuck, anchor, secure, and suspend them. She even installed 150-foot expandable hose that connects to pipes under her kitchen sink, so she only has to spend about a half-hour a day tending to her plants – an activity that she describes as a “moving meditation.”
“How to Make a Plant Love You” is Oakes’ guidebook for cultivating an entirely new relationship with your plant children. Inside, you’ll learn to:
• pause for the flowers and greenery all around you, even the ones sprouting bravely between cracked pavement;
• trust that your apartment jungle offers you far more than pretty décor;
• see the world from a plant’s perspective, trading modern consumerism for sustainability; and
• serve your chlorophyllic friends by learning to identify the right species for your home and to recreate their natural habitat. (Bonus: Your indoor garden won’t die!)
“When we become plant parents, we also become better caretakers of ourselves, the people around us, and our planet. So, let’s step inside the world of plants and discover how we can begin cultivating our own personal green space – in our homes, in our minds, and in our hearts,” Oakes writes.
The Fernseed is located at 2703 N. Proctor St. Visit www.TheFernseed.com to check out the calendar of events for more classes and workshops. Also, find The Fernseed on Facebook and Instagram (@thefernseed). The Fernseed is open Monday through Friday from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m., Saturday 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., and Sunday 12-5 p.m.