Yarrow Collective

Participatory installations that encourage creative acts of public gardening

Yarrow Collective creates free participatory art installations that playfully provokes urban humans to explore our shared role in stewarding ecosystems, address the climate crisis, and imagine the joyful possibilities of what a garden can be—moving gardening from 'expert' labour to a shared creative journey. Yarrow Collective weaves together multidisciplinary artistic practices in an ongoing relationship with the life cycles of plants and pollinators. 

As visitors on the traditional, unceded territory of the the lək̓ʷəŋən-speaking People, Yarrow Collective projects challenge colonial gardening and artistic practices, and raises awareness of Indigenous pollinator plants and wild bees. We contribute 15% of the artist fees paid to local Indigenous-led regeneration work in our region, partner with local community groups who will steward future pollinator gardens, and learn from those who are healing the land. 

Yarrow Collective is co-led by Sammie Gough and Laurel Green in collaboration with an extended community of artists, backyard gardeners, community activators, and a certified bee steward. We frequently partner with, and develop custom projects for local groups including: Pacific Opera Victoria, Theatre SKAM, Fernwood NRG, Art Gallery of Greater Victoria, Intrepid Theatre and The City of Victoria. 

Selected Projects 

Pacific Opera Victoria's Voices in Nature 

June 16 - 26, 2023

Co-Creators & Activators: Sammie Gough & Laurel Green
Collaborator: Elder Johnny Aitken
Every plant has a story to tell... if we can slow down and listen. Garden of Stories is an interactive journey that explores our relationships with invasive plants and asks: what does healing the land mean to you? Unsettle inherited notions of what plants belong and what plants are out of place, and consider the role you play in an ecosystem. 

Installed at Government House & Saxe Point Park. 

Pacific Opera Victoria 

June 1 - 19, 2022

Co-Creator & Lead Gardener: Sammie Gough
Co-Creator & Performer:  Simon Chalifoux
Co-Creator & Dramaturg: Laurel Green
AGGV Activators: Brenda Leo Moranchel & Kyrie
Bee Sculpture: Sophie Fuldauer with Myriam Parent

Yarrow Collective collaborated with Bass Simon Chalifoux to create a new participatory garden installation that toured to parks across Victoria as part of Voices in Nature. We invited participants to make a Indigenous flower seed ball, ‘plant’ it in a bee sculpture, and, accompanied by song, consider: what are you seeding for the future?

Performed at Outerbridge Park, Government House, Meeqan (Beacon Hill Park), Saxe Point, and the Art Gallery of Greater Victoria (AGGV).

Theatre SKAM's SKAMpede Performance Festival 

July 17 & 18, 2021

Lead Gardener & Producer: Sammie Gough
Dramaturg & Producer: Laurel Green
Bee Steward & Gardener: Myriam Parent
Installation & Textile Artist: Emma-Sky Warner-Dilts Installation Design & Illustrations: Sophie Fuldauer Activator: Zoe-Blue Coates
Hych’ka Siem to artist Johnny Aitken

Shaped by those who tend them, four interactive gardens were found at locations across downtown Victoria: SEEDING on the coastal edge of Songhees Point p’álәc’әs, DISRUPTING under the Bay Street Bridge, CARETAKING in the Wharf Street Parking Lot, and PLANTING on the Gorge side of the Selkirk Trestle.