Category Archives: Prairie Plants

Diversity, Redundancy, and Resilience

Grasslands face a long list of challenges.  In many regions, habitat loss and fragmentation top that list, leaving prairies to struggle for survival as tiny isolated patches of habitat.  In addition, invasive plants and animals keep finding new footholds within … Continue reading

Posted in Prairie Animals, Prairie Insects, Prairie Natural History, Prairie Photography, Prairie Plants | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | 8 Comments

A Plot-Sized Biodiversity and Photography Project

Today, I’m beginning a new photography project aimed at exploring and celebrating the small scale diversity and complexity of prairies.   I’ve picked out a 1 x 1 meter plot in a small patch of restored prairie here in Aurora, Nebraska, … Continue reading

Posted in Prairie Natural History, Prairie Photography, Prairie Plants | Tagged , , , , , , , , | 16 Comments

Photo of the Week – December 15, 2017

I haven’t done much photography lately, and that always makes me cranky.  I spent a couple days at the Niobrara Valley Preserve this week, but between the short day length right now, a busy meeting schedule, and cloudy/windy conditions, I … Continue reading

Posted in Prairie Natural History, Prairie Photography, Prairie Plants | Tagged , , , , | 4 Comments

A Brief Note on Painted Milkvetch

Painted milkvetch (Astragalus ceramicus) is a beautiful plant found in open sandy soils throughout much of the Great Plains and western U.S.  It is a perennial legume with white to pinkish flowers, but is most easily recognized by its ornate … Continue reading

Posted in Prairie Natural History, Prairie Photography, Prairie Plants | Tagged , | 37 Comments

…But Sometimes They’re White

I generally use this blog platform to share ideas and information about prairies, but now and then I also use it as a platform for asking questions.  Today is an example. I want to know why many wildflowers, especially those … Continue reading

Posted in Prairie Natural History, Prairie Photography, Prairie Plants | Tagged , , , , , , , , | 22 Comments

Back Door Thieves

I took a quick walk through one of our restored wetlands last week.  Most plants had finished blooming for the year, but in some recently-mowed patches, there were some scattered flowers of beggarticks (Bidens sp) and blue lobelia (Lobelia siphilitica). … Continue reading

Posted in Prairie Insects, Prairie Natural History, Prairie Photography, Prairie Plants | Tagged , , , , , , , , | 12 Comments

Photo of the Week – September 7, 2017

The numerous wildfires in the western U.S. and Canada have been sending smoke out our way, especially earlier this week.  I got up early Monday morning to catch the sunrise, hoping a smoky haze would soften the light well into … Continue reading

Posted in Prairie Insects, Prairie Natural History, Prairie Photography, Prairie Plants, Prairie Restoration/Reconstruction | Tagged , , , , , | 7 Comments

Well, Now, I Wonder…

People often seem surprised to learn that I’m an introvert – probably because in large groups, I feel pretty comfortable being the center of attention and talking to an interested audience.  However, when I’m just one of many people in … Continue reading

Posted in Prairie Animals, Prairie Insects, Prairie Natural History, Prairie Photography, Prairie Plants | Tagged , , , , | 12 Comments

Photo of the Week – August 24, 2017

Today at the Niobrara Valley Preserve, we were hosting a field trip for a group of land managers from around the Sandhills.  As our caravan of pickups was traveling across our east bison pasture at around 5pm, Gerry Steinauer (state … Continue reading

Posted in Prairie Natural History, Prairie Photography, Prairie Plants | Tagged , , , | 10 Comments

Trying to Create Something Different in the Nebraska Sandhills

At our Niobrara Valley Preserve (NVP), we’re experimenting with prairie management techniques to see if we can create a wider range of habitat conditions than is found throughout much of the Nebraska Sandhills.  On many Sandhills ranches, pastures look fairly … Continue reading

Posted in Prairie Management, Prairie Natural History, Prairie Photography, Prairie Plants | Tagged , , , , , , , | 10 Comments