Peach Rose, Karen Hugg, www.karenhugg.com, #gardening #rose #peachrose

My Trilogy of Novels

My trilogy of novels are a touch speculative in nature. They deal with the dilemmas and consequences related to previously unknown, botanically unique plants. In the other words, a plant that doesn’t exist today but someday might either through hybridization or accidental mutation.

Harvesting the Sky

The first two novels in the trilogy are complete. The first, Harvesting the Sky, asks the question: What would happen if an apple was discovered that cured illness? It focuses on a botanist and his struggles to propagate a genetically special apple tree while being opposed by skeptical traditionalists. It deals with issues of religion versus science and redeeming one’s self from past mistakes. Because it’s about an American living in Paris, it also deals with issues of alienation and generational differences.

The Forgetting Flower

The second novel is entitled The Forgetting Flower. It asks the question: What would happen if a plant’s scent could erase a memory? It centers on a plant shop owner who, while caring for the plant of an estranged sister, must decide whether to sell its flowers illegally to keep a new better life afloat. It deals with ethical issues of selling natural drugs on the black market, a woman’s struggle to create her own destiny, and familial issues of attachment and broken ties. Because the protagonist is a young Polish woman living in Paris, it also deals with issues of migration, class, income inequality, and aspirational choices.

The Rhythm of Wind

The third book is called The Rhythm of Wind and is about a speculative forest. A stand of oddly mutated trees send out chemicals through their roots that sprout a kind of nut that only certain humans can eat. When women ingest the nuts, they are highly likely to get pregnant. But the pregnancies are unstable and it’s unclear whether they are healthy for women. Who can digest the nut isn’t based on race or gender but rather a random genetic pattern. The protagonists of the previous books are featured in this final book. Issues of scarcity, human evolution, infertility, romantic love, and questions of class and privilege will be explored.

Plants Are Alluring

These stories have been in my mind for several years. They are what fascinate me. They are what I feel are worth addressing. Plants are our life force though they are often only part of a person’s background. If I can figure out how to make plants as alluring as I, a horticulturalist, know them to be, I believe I can bring more people into the fold of valuing the environment. I work every day as a horticulturalist and writer to add a unique perspective to a larger body of work.