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The Earth in Her Hands: 75 Extraordinary Women Working in the World of Plants

Timber Press |  Releasing March 3, 2020

{Kicking off Women’s History Month and International Women’s Day!}

"In this beautiful and empowering book, Jennifer Jewell—host of public radio’s award-winning program and podcast Cultivating Place—introduces 75 inspiring women. Working in wide-reaching fields that include botany, floral design, landscape architecture, farming, herbalism, and food justice, these influencers are creating change from the ground up. Profiled women include flower farmer Erin Benzakein; co-director of Soul Fire Farm Leah Penniman; plantswoman Flora Grubb; edible and cultural landscape designer Leslie Bennett; Caribbean-American writer and gardener Jamaica Kincaid; soil scientist Elaine Ingham; landscape designer Ariella Chezar; floral designer Amy Merrick, and many more. Rich with personal stories and insights, Jewell’s portraits reveal a devotion that transcends age, locale, and background, reminding us of the profound role of green growing things in our world—and our lives." -Workman Publications


Focusing in a wholly unique way on how horticulture intersects with our every day world and on women whose work has enriched and expanded these intersections in the last 25 years, The Earth in Her Hands: 75 Extraordinary Women Working in the World of Plants explores and celebrates how the plant world is improved by not only greater representation of women generally but also by diversity amongst those women.


It chronicles how working in the world of plants is a more viable and creative career path for women than ever before and how the plant-work world is demonstrating greater social and environmental responsibility, in large part due to women’s contributions. 


Walking through profiles of women doing current and innovative work in all fields horticultural – botany, environmental science, landscape design and architecture, floriculture, agriculture, social justice, plant seeking and breeding, seed science, gardening, garden writing and garden photography, public garden administration, research, and public policy – we see how they often represent larger issues or shifts in our world.


The work of these women illustrates how the many challenges of our world - environmental, economic, cultural/societal, individual - can and are being met through cultivating an interdependence with plants. The group of 75 includes representatives from the United States, England, Ireland, Wales, Canada, Australia, India, and Japan. 


These paradigm-shifting women range beautifully across race, ethnicity, socio-economic and religious backgrounds, sexual orientation, and age - in a way that transcends preconceived notions of what horticulture/gardening are and what plants people/gardeners look like. 


These women and their work have profoundly positive impacts on the larger world - aesthetically, environmentally, culturally, and economically - making them joyful and encouraging role models and inspirations for us all.


For a listing of all of our speaking engagements in conjunction with this book please visit our EVENTS page.  

*A second book is also underway! Working with (and conceived of by) the talented photographer Caitlin Atkinson about beautiful, innovative, and inspiring Western Gardens in our time of global uncertainty - look for this one in late 2020 or early 2021. 

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