The stonecrop family is a group of hardy plants found worldwide. As the name suggests, many plants in this family grow in rocky places. Because of their hardiness and proclivity for rocks, stones, and old walls, the stonecrop seemed like the perfect emblem for a magazine about urban nature.
Urban nature? Is there such a thing? Why, of course! Cities are teeming with nature: trees cracking through the sidewalk, raccoons rummaging through the rubbish, peregrines nesting on the steel and glass cliffs of skyscrapers. You could even go so far as to say the entire city itself is part of nature:
Concrete, glass, steel- / meaning limestone, silica, gypsum, sand, / manganese, sodium, sulfur, ore – / anything unnatural here?
– From ‘Nature Poetry’ by Meg Kearney
Stonecrop Review is a bi-annual magazine of creative non-fiction, fiction, photography, and art that explores nature in cities. It asks questions such as ‘what is nature?’ and ‘what is a city?’, and explores the line between the two. Our writers explore the near at hand: their own backyards, street trees, parks, and abandoned lots.
We seek pieces that explore the ways in which human, non-human animals, and plants have created, adapted to, and thrived in cities. We are particularly keen to publish works that explore nature in cities that have not been as widely represented in the urban nature canon. So, whilst we’ll happily read pieces about New York, Chicago, and London, we’ll be ecstatic to read your submissions from Sheffield, Calgary, Nairobi, and Chennai!
If you want to know what we like, here’s a short list of books and artworks we’re inspired by:
- Leonard Dubkin’s The Natural History of a Yard
- Rose Macauley’s The World My Wilderness
- Richard Mabey’s The Unofficial Countryside
- Charles Siebert’s Wickerby: An Urban Pastoral
- City Wilds edited by Terrell Dixon
- Melissa Harrison’s Clay
- David Goldstein (photography series “Urban Nature”)
- Jonathan Stenvall (photography series “Urban Wildlife”)
- Jason Logan Make Ink: A Forager’s Guide to Natural Inkmaking
- Paul Madonna’s All Over Coffee and other works