“Beautiful Weeds”

by Carlos M. Burgos

© 2021 Carlos M. Burgos

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Describe your painting:

This piece shows beautiful native plants and many bugs that depend on them. Information is provided to outline medicinal and other uses of each plant.

What inspired you?

I wanted to bring attention to beneficial, native wildlife.

What is your background as an artist?

I have been creating since I was a child. My work is heavily influenced by comic book and graffiti art mixed with elements of nature.

Do you have a connection to Garner or did you learn anything new about Garner as a result of your painting?

I currently work in Garner and my daughter and I both love the community.

Native plants in this piece include:

1. Pokeweed – One of the top plants for migratory birds on the Eastern corridor; supplies nourishment for squirrels, foxes, opossums, raccoons, leopard moths, and hummingbirds. Its roots have medicinal uses and its berries are used for color in wine and textiles.
2. Joe Pye Weed – This plant has nectar-rich blooms that attract bees and many butterflies, such as hairstreaks, skippers, fritillaries, and swallowtails.
3. Hemp Dogbane – Native Americans have used this plant for thousands of years to make rope, twine, and clothing. It attracts butterflies and bees.
4. Beebalm – This perennial supports butterflies, bees, and hummingbirds. In the fall it, attracts birds such as finches, sparrows, juncos, and redpolls. It also has medicinal uses.
5. Echinacea – Boosts the immune system, shortens colds and flu, and supports a wide variety of insects.
6. Goldenrods – Can be used to alleviate pain, swelling, gout, and arthritis. Attracts a variety of pollinators.
7. Mountain Mint – Tea and crushed leaves can be used to treat menstrual pain, indigestion, mouth sores, gum disease, and toothaches. Supports a large variety of pollinators.
8. Blue Mistflower – Used in traditional medicine to treat skin infections and stop bleeding. High in antioxidants.
9. Common Milkweed – Monarch host plant used by many indigenous tribes for wart removal and to treat dysentery.
10. Greater Tickseed – Attracts butterflies, birds, and bees. This tough perennial can tolerate dry, hot weather and is deer-resistant.
11. Fleabane – Its flowers alleviate congestion, coughs, and promote respiratory health. Can also be used as a diuretic. Has antimicrobial and astringent properties.
12. Self Heal – This medicinal plant can be used to stop bleeding, heal wounds, treat heart disease, and treat sore throats.
13. Narrow Leaf Blue-Eyed Grass – Can be used to treat diarrhea and stomachaches. Attracts birds, bees, and butterflies.
14. Lyreleaf Sage – This perennial’s leaves are often used to soothe coughs and colds. Attracts bees, butterflies, and hummingbirds.
15. Wood Sorrel – Can be used topically to cool skin. Also useful in treating scurvy, sore throats, nausea, fever, urinary tract infections, and mouth sores. It can also help cleanse blood. Attracts bees, flower flies, and butterflies.
16. Tiny Bluets – All parts of this plant are edible. It is used to treat the bladder, digestive issues, anorexia, anemia, and heartburn. Helps with cramps, diabetes, jaundice, constipation, and liver disease. Attracts bees and small butterflies.

Can you find these bugs in the painting?

1. Bee Mimic Fly
2. Grey Hairstreak Butterfly
3. Dogbane Beetle
4. Monarch Butterfly
5. Fireflies (7)
6. Honeybees (2)
7. Rabid Wolf Spider
8. Common Whitetail Dragonfly
9. Katydid
10. Clearwing Hummingbird Moth
11. Carolina Mantis
12. Bumblebee