The Garden's Sexiest Plants

Author Helen Yoest holds forth on the rumored libido-enhancing effects of plants with benefits.

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Plants with Benefits 12

Plants with Benefits 12

Photo by: Image courtesy of St. Lynn's Press

Image courtesy of St. Lynn's Press

“I didn’t set out to write a botanical Kama Sutra,” says author Helen Yoest in the introduction to her new book Plants with Benefits: An Uninhibited Guide to the Aphrodisiac Herbs, Fruits, Flowers & Veggies In Your Garden. “I am a gardener. I’m intrigued by the idea that many plants have a special appeal to one or more of our senses…I think that’s one reason some gardens give us such a deep feeling of contentment.”

So she pitched the idea of gardening for all five senses to her publisher, who suggested she narrow the focus to aphrodisiac plants. Sex sells, right? “So began my quest to understand how plants can play with our erotic feelings, as well as stimulate our sense of well-being and receptivity to intimacy,” Yoest writes. “Very soon it became clear that Mother Nature, in collusion with that sly fellow, Pan, had not only provided us humans with a cornucopia of plants that feed and heal us, but that assure our continual interest in procreation.”

From almonds to watermelon, Yoest shares the history of each aphrodisiac and anecdotes, plus growing details and tips and even a few recipes (tomato temptation, anyone?). 

Ready to talk dirty? Here are just a few of her findings:

10 Sexy Plants

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Asparagus

Photo By: Image by David Spain

Avocado

Photo By: Image by Carolyn Binder

Anise

Photo By: Image by David Spain

Basil

Photo By: Photo by Carolyn Binder

Carrot

Photo By: Image by David Spain

Dates

Photo By: Image by Helen Yoest

Fig

Photo By: Image by Helen Yoest

Ginger

Photo By: Image by Steve Asbell

Hippocras

Photo By: Image by Ken Gergle

Cocoa Beans

Photo By: Image by Carolyn Binder

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