Born 1983, Ankara, Turkey. I originally graduated in Environmental Engineering, but instead of this I chose this entirely different path for my life and have been working full time as a botanical artist for over 10 years. I am very glad I made this decision, though as the child of a botanist father and growing up surrounded by wild nature made my decision easy.

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HomeFlora of TurkeyA Plant Trip to the East of Anatolia

A Plant Trip to the East of Anatolia

From Rize to Artvin Şavşat, Kars to Agri Dogubayazıt and Van at the end. There is much to tell from this plant trip that we went out with ViraNatura Tours. But most importantly, it is to be in one of these tours. My sister, also a botanist, Başak and her husband Chris, organising plant tours around the world as ViraNatura Tours. Chris, who also led this tour, introduced us to the magnificent beauty of the plants in the east of Turkey. Chris also has a broad knowledge of plants in Turkey as well as the other parts of the world and he is sharing them with tour participants.

The purpose of these tours, which are participants from all over the world; to see these plants in their habitats and to photograph them. Having such a hobby is as wonderful as plants.

It is not possible to tell the beauty of plants we have seen, so I took lots of photographs. During the tour we were between 2000 and 3000 meters, and we were very fortunate, because this year, unlike the seasonal norms, plants flowered about two weeks ago.

Some of the beauty we have the chance to see; Scilla rosenii, Anemone narcissiflora, many species of Fritillaria – F. latifolia, F. michailovskyi,  F. kurdica, F. alburiana and Allium akaka, Colchicum kurdicum, also some endemics like, Psephellus karduchorum, Tchihatchewia isatidea and of course 8 magnificent Iris species.

Of course we met with sad situations like we saw so many beautiful things on the trip. The motorway on Ovit Mountain, the castle walls next to these roads, a tunnel under construction. The same situation in Palandöken, highways and walls. The dam in Yusufeli, the beauty that dam will stole from us. Along the way we’ve always seen construction. In everywhere, without exception. They covering the country with the roads. And unfortunately these roads bring a massive destruction of the habitats, and bring along the trash. Humankind is insatiable, always wanting more.

You can get information from to join these beautiful tours. At the same time, there is a wonderful book by my sister Başak Gardner and Chris Gardner which includes diverse plants of the Silk Road. You can purchase it from this address – Click here! 


  • August 18, 2018

    Ourania Hatzidaki

    I am a great fan of your work. I like the fact that you travel and paint, not just sit and paint garden flowers and market vegetables. I am a mountaineer and always observe alpine plants as I walk, so I loved reading about your Anatolia venture. I often use images from your site as desktop pictures. I just read above that Başak Gardner is your sister! I have the Silk Road book, which I treasure. This was a truly amazing project. Good for you, girls! So talented and accomplished!