Category Archives: Prairie Plants

Photo of the Week – May 21, 2015

We were working at our Rulo Bluffs Preserve this week.  While Nelson was shredding brush on the ridge tops, I was pulling garlic mustard and killing small trees.  I also found time to take a few photos.  Here is one … Continue reading

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Photo of the Week – May 7, 2015

As I’ve said many times, the prairie is an ecosystem best seen up close.  You have to look carefully to see much of the beauty.  Dillon (one of our Hubbard Fellows) and I were poking around today and found this … Continue reading

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A Visual Illustration of Plant Diversity’s Importance

Last week, I took some photos that powerfully demonstrate the importance of plant diversity. Several years ago, we created some research plots to help us learn more about how plant diversity interacts with ecosystem function.  As you can see above, the … Continue reading

Posted in Prairie Natural History, Prairie Plants, Prairie Restoration/Reconstruction | Tagged , , , , , , | 16 Comments

Photo of the Week – April 24, 2015

The aesthetic values of prairie are more subtle than those in many other ecosystems.  There is much beauty to be found, but you sometimes have to look for it – it doesn’t often rise up and slap you in the … Continue reading

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Introducing: The Prairie Word of the Day

I’m sure many of you are as tired of this blog as I am.  The same old nature photos, natural history, prairie management/restoration information…  It just drones on and on.  Honestly, I don’t know how you manage to drag your … Continue reading

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Pretty but Powerful

Because they can’t run away, plants may seem helpless against the many large and small herbivores that like to eat them.  Nothing could be further from the truth. Many plants have physical defenses such as thorns or stiff hairs to … Continue reading

Posted in Prairie Animals, Prairie Insects, Prairie Natural History, Prairie Plants | Tagged , , , , , | 5 Comments

From the Ashes

Last Friday, I wandered through the small prairie we burned back on March 10.  Even though it is still very early spring, there were already a number of prairie plants popping out of the ground.  I posted photos of this site … Continue reading

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Photo of the Week – March 12, 2015

We conducted our first prescribed burn of the Spring this week.  It was very small – about an acre or so – surrounded by gravel roads.  The first burn after a long winter is always a little rocky; everyone’s a … Continue reading

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Every Little Bit Helps

I’m getting excited about this upcoming field season.  For the first time in several years, we’re going to be attempting to harvest seed from as many prairie plant species as we can.  Between about 1997 and 2005, we spent much of … Continue reading

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Why Does Plant Diversity Matter? Help Us Figure It Out!

How important is plant diversity in restored prairies? Are diverse prairies more resistant to drought and invasive species than less diverse prairies? How does plant diversity influence invertebrate communities and their ecological functions? These kinds of questions have been the focus … Continue reading

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