Teresa Speight, author of Black Flora, a new book about African Americans in the world of floriculture, tells the stories of farmers, florists, and other floral creatives who answered the call of the flowers, tapped into their passion, and listened to their hearts. There is a rich, beautiful, complex, and diverse narrative being told by African Americans and other persons of color in the floral marketplace. It is long past time to recognize their excellence and contributions to cut-flower farming and floristry, as they sow the seeds for the next generation.
Author, podcaster, and garden writer Teresa J. Speight is a proud native of Washington, DC, as well as a mother, grandmother, garden writer, and history lover. With ancestral sharecropping roots originating in North and South Carolina, she feels deeply connected with the earth. She’s honored those roots through her work as head gardener for the City of Fredericksburg, Virginia; as a founding farmer of an organic CSA farm; as founder and president of Jabali Amani Garden Collective, an online African American garden club focusing on “beautifying urban areas in our communities”; and as an estate gardener. Teresa also works to reconnect people with the soil through one-on-one garden coaching and by offering curated garden experiences for small groups.
Teresa is the author of Black Flora: Profiles of Inspiring Black Flower Farmers + Florists and co-author of The Urban Garden: 101 Ways to Grow Food and Beauty in the City. On her podcast Cottage in the Court (available on Anchor or Apple Podcasts), Teresa introduces interesting people, discovers unique places, and adds a little poetry to remind everyone to embrace the garden, as it is here for us.
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