Eco-Garden

Weeds to Wildflowers
In 2020, I began an exploration that had intrigued me since I moved back to the family homestead in upstate New York. I was curious about the weeds my mother and I used pull from her vegetable garden every spring. What were they, really? Could some of them be wildflowers?

That year, I decided to let them grow.

By summer the garden had become a wild field of fleabane, red clover, apple mint, wood asters, brown-eyed Susans and more.

I also noticed a proliferation of bees, dragonflies and butterflies returning to the garden – some of which I hadn’t seen since childhood.

This prompted a multi-year project of transforming the entire yard into a biodynamic eco-garden, which also informs my artistic explorations into the interconnectivity of nature for my artwork.

In 2022, with the help of iNaturalist, I began identifying all the plant species on the property, allowing sections of the yard to grow wild as I chronicled my discoveries as well as the stories and memories behind each plant. In the course of my explorations, I discovered an American elm tree growing underneath the porch (that Mom repeatedly tried to remove) and field pennycress that may become part of a national research project on climate change. To date, my inventory has reached well over 50 plant species.

I am not a trained naturalist. I am simply an artist who has been gardening since childhood, an observer of nature exploring the history of my little garden and yard as I contemplate much larger questions about the future of our environment and humanity.

SerenaK

Click to view posts In the Garden

CLICK IMAGE to read Serena Kovalosky’s journal on the development of The Eco-Garden Project.


CLICK IMAGE for an All-Taxa Biodiversity Inventory of plant species identified to date and the artist’s stories behind each plant.