A History of Houseplants

October 1, 2022 – June 4, 2023

Evergreen Museum & Library

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Evergreen’s new exhibition, A History of Houseplants, explores the forces that catalyzed the Victorian obsession with houseplants, reveals how the trend manifested at Evergreen and in Baltimore, and examines how today’s houseplant craze both recalls and differs from the Victorian version of 150 years ago.

exhibition flyer

Related Programming

Exhibition Opening with Panel Discussion and Reception

September 30, 2022, 6-9 p.m. The grand opening of A History of Houseplants featured a special panel discussion and Q&A with Liz Vayda of B.Willow; Meghan Avolio, Ph.D., Assistant Professor of Earth and Planetary Sciences at the Johns Hopkins University; Michelle Fitzgerald, Curator of Collection at the Johns Hopkins University Museums; and Lori Beth Finkelstein, Ph.D., Director of the Johns Hopkins University Museums. Then guests explored the exhibition, enjoyed food and drink, and chatted with the curatorial staff and special guests. Click HERE to see images of the event.

Plants & Planters Sale

November 19, 2022, 11 a.m.-2 p.m. This market featured local vendors selling unique home and garden items. Guests also had an opportunity to explore the exhibition A History of Houseplants and take a free, self-guided tour of Evergreen’s gardens and grounds.


  • NebuKitty: stained-glass hanging planters and sterling silver jewelry
  • KelBre Designs: painted terracotta pots
  • City Macramé: macramé plant hangers, home decor, earrings, and more
  • The Pot Guy: 3-D printed houseplant pots
  • Blue Canyon Design: unique jewelry and gifts
  • Evergreen Museum & Library Gift Shop: stylish terrariums, planters/vases, vintage and new jewelry, books & more!

Botanical Happy Hour w/ Mixologist Brendan Dorr

January 26, 2023, 6-7:30 P.M. Without plants, we would not have the vast variety of spirits we enjoy. Corn, sugar cane, wheat, rye, gentian, juniper, wormwood, cucumber, and many more provide the base and flavors of the spirits and cocktails we consume. Join Brendan Dorr, co-owner of the celebrated Baltimore cocktail bar Dutch Courage, for a talk celebrating the connection between common plants and creative cocktails. Sip pre-made cocktails and/or mocktails, nosh on gourmet snacks, listen to Dorr’s presentation, and explore the museum’s current exhibition, A History of Houseplants.

Foraging & Fungi Forum

March 18, 2023, 2-3:30 P.M. Did you know that Evergreen once had a greenhouse devoted entirely to cultivating mushrooms? Learn the history of mushrooms at Evergreen Museum & Library and tips and tricks for mushroom identification and seasonal foraging in Maryland at this lively discussion with JHU Museums’ Curator of Collections Michelle Fitzgerald and Nick Spero, retired entomologist and trustee of the Natural History Society of Maryland. Includes an opportunity to explore the museum’s current exhibition, A History of Houseplants.

Garden Party

June 4, 2023, 11 a.m.-2 p.m. Evergreen bid a fond farewell to A History of Houseplants with a family-friendly Garden Party, that featured scavenger hunts, lawn games, free tours of the museum, a plant and accessories sale by Good Neighbor, foraging tours of the property led by Nick Spero of the Natural History Society of Maryland, and one last chance to see the exhibit.


Evergreen Museum & Library gratefully acknowledges B.Willow, Green Fields Nursery & Landscaping Co., and Pinehurst Landscape Company for their support of the exhibition and its related programs.