Episode 43: Summer Rayne Oakes of Homestead Brooklyn


It all started with a single fiddle leaf fig. Now Summer Rayne Oakes has hundreds of houseplants in her Brooklyn apartment, plus a chicken. Yes a chicken! I talk to Summer Rayne about how it all began, how to keep maidenhair ferns alive, the cool things you can grow in a vivarium, and why chickens and Calatheas don't mix in this week's show.


If you want to find out more about Summer Rayne, the best place to start is her Homestead Brooklyn page (her Instagram is @HomesteadBrooklyn); find out more about her workshops, talks and the NY plant swap she's involved in here, and details of her houseplant masterclass are here

Here are a few useful bullet points picking up on topics we covered in our chat:

*Want to find out more about my Patreon offering? Keep scrolling down - details below!

Question of the week 

I wanted to know how to perk up my Epiphyllum anguliger aka fishbone or ric rac cactus with some new growing medium when I repot: I posted a cry for help on Instagram and got a great response from listeners. The consensus is that it needs houseplant compost mixed with some orchid bark and perlite, but the exact ratio I'll have to decide for myself! 

Want to ask me a question? Tweet @janeperrone, leave a message on my Facebook page or email ontheledgepodcast@gmail.com

On The Ledge joins Patreon

So I've joined Patreon so that you can show your support for the show and get the extra On The Ledge content you're calling for. For example, this week patrons can listen to an extra chunk of chat with guest Summer Rayne Oakes, available from Saturday April 7). For as little as $5 you'll get at least TWO bonus podcast episodes per month, plus extra posts and info you won't find anywhere else.

Confused? There's a FAQ here that should answer your query: if not leave a comment or email me - ontheledgepodcast@gmail.com. If you're already supporting others via Patreon, just click here to set up your rewards!

On The Ledge talks, live show and houseplant chats 

If you are in or near London and around on the evening of April 10 2018, come and see me talking to Alice Vincent of the Telegraph and plant historian Catherine Horwood about the future of houseplants at the Garden Museum. Book your tickets now

I'll also be making an appearance at Gardeners' World Live in Birmingham on June 14 on the Blooming Interiors stage - check out the schedule here. I am also going to be at the Hampton Court Palace Flower Show on the afternoon of July 4 giving talks on houseplants in the roses theatre - do join me if you can. And on the evening of Friday October 26 I'll be bringing a live show of On The Ledge to the RHS London Urban Garden show, with special guests including Alys Fowler and all kinds of leafy fun! Put those dates in your diary NOW!

Buy me a coffee! 

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You can also buy me a coffee! A donation of just £3 helps keep On The Ledge going: helping to pay for me to travel to interviews, and for expenses like website hosting and audio equipment. Don't forget to join the Facebook page for news of what's coming up on the show and bonus blogposts!


This week's show featured Roll Jordan Roll by the Joy DropsAn Instrument the Boy Called Happy Day Gokarna by Samuel Corwin, and Oh Mallory by Josh Woodward, all licensed under Creative Commons.

Jane Perrone