Seasonal Color with Native Plants

When you think of vibrant colors for your garden, do you only think of spring and summer? But there is such a beautiful rainbow possible for fall and winter too! Many native plants can add a pop of color to every season. It is essential to plant across all seasons not just for colors but also to keep your garden and the miniature ecosystems in your backyard healthy and thriving year-round.


Bluestem Ecological Services will be presenting Seasonal Color with Native Plants. This presentation will briefly discuss who Bluestem is and some projects they have done. Then the bulk of the presentation will discuss why it is important to garden or plant, keeping all seasons in mind. Discover information about the types of seasonal interests to look for when you are growing across the year. Our presenters will discuss seasonal colors, textures/structures, movements, flowers, and food sources. Also, come and find out about some of their favorite spring ephemerals, summer staples, fall foliage favorites, and winter warriors in the native plant world. Join us and learn about your backyard’s fantastic seasonal opportunities!


                                     About Our Speakers  

Elly Flemming  has had a passion for the environment since she put on her first Reduce, Reuse, Recycle presentation at 6 years old. Her goals are to constantly push for more accessible sustainability education and native plants for all. Elly has a bachelor’s degree in Environmental Science with a concentration in Biological Conservation. She has done multiple environmental education internships at locations such as Cosley Zoo in Wheaton, IL, and the Loggerhead Marinelife Center down in Florida. Elly now continues her environmental experience at Bluestem by promoting ecological restoration and native plantings in order to maintain ecosystem functions and sustainable balance.


Sarah Voska is originally from the Barrington area but now calls McHenry County home. Her personal mission is to support micro-level community engagement to achieve macro-level environmental goals. Sarah holds a bachelor’s degree in Sustainable Management & a graduate certificate in Climate Action. With a background in environmental education, she enjoys giving presentations to clients, schools & non-profits on the benefits of native plants, climate change, ESG & more.

She serves on Gateway Technical College’s Horticulture Department Industry Advisory Board and on Schaumburg Monarch Initiative’s Board of Directors. She is also a member of the UN Decade on Ecosystem Restoration’s Youth Task Force, where she advises on policy implementation to achieve global goals in biodiversity, youth engagement and habitat restoration.