Frequently Asked Questions
How did the Houseplant Masterclass develop?
The Houseplant Masterclass was borne out of the desire to create a comprehensive audiovisual course on indoor gardening for houseplant enthusiasts looking to sharpen their skills and deepen their appreciation and understanding of plants. Though you can find online courses on everything from garden design to permaculture, there was nothing online that provided both a broad overview and deep dive into houseplant care. And though you can find an assortment of answers to specific houseplant questions online and in books, the information is often scattered across the web and various tomes, making it challenging as a learning experience. Additionally, I had ample requests from people outside my city to put my houseplant workshops online. All of these elements gave a good indication that there was a need for a Masterclass like this. In early 2018, I released both a Kickstarter and Indiegogo InDemand campaign, for which helped jumpstart the creation of the Masterclass you see today.
What kind of information will I find in this course?
The Course is divided into 5 sections: The Introduction, The Houseplant Master Mindset, The Ten Commandments of Plant Care, Living with Plants, and the Appendices. The Introduction sets up the course with both a broad and deep overview of how plants developed here on earth, the inner-workings of plants, and how houseplants came to be. Then we transition into the second section, which helps the Masterclass participant learn the skills of observation. This helps set the participant up to intuit caring for plants, as houseplant care is not all about memorization of botanical names and houseplant tips. The longest section is on The Ten Commandments of Plant Care, which dives deeply into aspects of lighting, watering, fertilizing and more. Then the penultimate section, Living with Plants, covers more specific considerations when you bring plants into the home, like how to handle insect pests to propagation. From there, the Appendices go deep into everything from botanical Latin to a Care & Fertilizer Spreadsheet for 300+ Houseplants. Lastly, you’ll find product and book recommendations throughout the Masterclass and in the Bonus sections.
How did you go about sourcing information for this course?
The information in this course was sourced through a multitude of ways. Firstly, I pulled not only from my own personal experience of growing around 550 plant species and over 200 varieties in my home for the past 10 years, but also from my background and 15+ years of work as an environmental scientist, entomologist and environmental communicator. I am not alone in my contributions to this course, however; many other professionals—many whom are leading specialists in their field—have contributed to the robust information you’ll see in the Houseplant Masterclass. Over the past years, I have interviewed and conversed with nearly 50 experts, including botanists, horticulturalists, ecologists, plant taxonomists, horticulture professors, botanical curators, growers, botanical garden employees, plant sellers, and more. Though scientific literature as far as indoor gardening goes is sparse, you’ll still find throughout the course copious information that was cited from a selection of peer-reviewed science journals, articles, and books. Overall I believe you’ll find the Houseplant Masterclass to be well researched, well cited, and one of the most comprehensive (and engaging) courses on plant care for the home!
Will the Houseplant Masterclass ever become a book or guide?
That’s still to be determined! Though I think books can be restricted due to limitations of the printed page, I do believe books have their place, and I can see some of the information here in the Masterclass existing in book form. In the meantime, I’ll be coming out with the book, How to Make a Plant Love You (Optimism Press, July 2019), which will serve as a companion book to the Houseplant Masterclass.
When does the course start and finish?
The course starts as soon as you purchase the package. Sections of the Houseplant Masterclass will be disseminated daily over the course of a month, as it’s designed to help you learn a little every day without overwhelming you. Please note that once you start the program, there is no way to pause it and no way to speed it up, but you’ll be able to return to it whenever you’re able.
How long do I have access to the course?
You have access to the course for as long as the course remains up, which we imagine will be forever.
The course is audiovisual. Does that mean there isn't any text?
The entire course is written out in text, but there are also audio and visual components to the course. Almost everything that has been written out, with the exception of certain tables, charts and photos, has an audio component, so you can choose to listen and read along, or just listen, or just read. Additionally, certain sections of the Houseplant Masterclass have video components, particularly in places where someone would benefit from seeing a visual, like a propagation demonstration, for instance. In total sum, there is around 8 hours of audio and visual components to the Masterclass.
Can I get my money back if I don’t like the course?
You’ll get a good sense of what the course will be like within the first three days. If the Masterclass is not what you expected it to be, then you can ask for your money back within the first 72 hours (3 days) of purchase. Once your refund is initiated, your access to the course will be revoked.
Will I need to purchase special equipment for this course?
Not at all. The Houseplant Masterclass will teach you certain techniques and show different tools throughout the course, specifically ones that have worked well for me, but you are in no way obliged to purchase anything you see within the Masterclass. If you want to purchase any of the tools or products that you see in the course, I do provide links, some affiliate-based, as to where you can purchase the products, especially since everyone always asks, “Where did you get that?”
I don’t have a laptop or desktop. Can I do this course on my tablet or mobile phone?
Yes! The Houseplant Masterclass is optimized for all devices, including a tablet or a mobile phone, so you can do the course even while you’re in transit on a train, plane, or waiting at the airport or at the doctor’s office, for instance—provided that you have an internet connection.
I'm outside the United States, can I still do the Houseplant Masterclass?
Absolutely! The Houseplant Masterclass was particularly designed for people who are not able to attend my in-person workshops and who have a desire to learn more about their plants. The Houseplant Masterclass is done entirely online, so you can purchase the program online from anywhere in the world, as long as you have a valid credit card. The course, however, is only offered in the English language at this time.
I did the course and I’d like to provide feedback. How do I go about doing that?
At the end of the course, you’ll find a short survey that we encourage you to do so that we can get your thoughts on what you liked about the course and how you’d improve it.
I LOVED the course and am eager to share it. Do you have an Affiliate Program?
Absolutely! If you genuinely enjoyed the Houseplant Masterclass and are a blogger, Instagrammer, podcaster, YouTuber, or just an all around houseplant fanatic and want to share your experience of the Houseplant Masterclass, then we encourage it and believe you should be rewarded. If you’re keen on sharing the course and would like to join our Affiliate Program, there is information at the end of the course on how you can apply.
Where else can I learn from you?
If you haven't yet, check out "Plant One On Me", my weekly YouTube series; "365 Days of Plants" on IGTV and YouTube, where I highlight plant care daily, follow on Instagram @homesteadbrooklyn, read the blog at homesteadbrooklyn.com, and come to a workshop or event, which you can find online at homesteadbrooklyn.com as well.
What is the new Houseplant Care Tracker you include?
The Houseplant Care Tracker is a separate bonus product we're trialing and included with the Houseplant Masterclass. The Tracker is a dynamic spreadsheet built on the Coda platform that more easily tracks the fertilizing and watering schedules of your plants—as well as allows you to record important events in your plant's life (e.g., new leaf!). We provide comprehensive tutorials to help take you through how the Houseplant Care Tracker works, how you can use your Houseplant Care Spreadsheet to populate the Tracker, and how to set up email alerts or notifications when your plants need attention. This can be accessed both on desktop as well as a mobile device, but you need a Chrome browser (for desktop), a smart phone (to download the coda app that powers the interactive spreadsheet), and a gmail account to get started. The coda app is available on both iPhone and Android and has some limitations, however, so please do refer to that on their own website.