Seeking Smart People & Smart Phone Photographers

This summer marks my seventh year with TPE and completes our 50th land protection project. One of the special responsibilities that comes along with completing all these projects is the care we give these sites by burning, brushing and planting more prairies and savannas. Now that TPE is accredited, one additional activity we must do is complete an annual visit to all our conservation easements and fee-owned properties to complete a monitoring report. We now need volunteers to help with the monitoring.

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Resilience Frames Prairie Management and Expectations

This introduction to the concept of resilience and how it applies to our prairie restoration work was an article published in the August 2019 Prairie Promoter.

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Seed Shed Doings, April 2019

Another update on doings of the Northwest Illinois Prairie Enthusiasts. Here's the story of how a happy accident led to the arrival of a rare bird at Hanley Savanna.

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A Case For Planting Conservative Species - A Love Story

In 1980, as part of my field ecology internship with the International Crane Foundation's (ICF) prairie restoration project, my supervisor Konrad Liegel and I divided our seed collection between an “experimental” fall plot of one acre and a much larger planting the following spring. This was the second planting on the newly purchased farm before any infrastructure was built, and at a time few practitioners saw fall plantings as a good alternative to the traditional spring ones. We didn't know then how pivotal this experiment would be.

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Exhibit Showcases Eldred's Artwork

Gary Eldred guessed that 50 people might attend his exhibit opening at Holy Wisdom Monastery.  When nearly 200 people appeared that January night, he was “absolutely, completely humbled”.

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One Member's Passion For Butterflies

Our most ambitious prairie restoration year is behind us—90+ acres were seeded with native forbs and grasses. Prairie Diva Barbara reported that seed picking was challenging this year due to rain, rain, and more rain. Still, she and her team managed to pick close to 200 species. Over 2,700 lbs. of seeds were collected with the help of 400 volunteer hours spread over 40 public picking sessions.

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Owing Attention On Moely Prairie

Our work helping to restore Moely Prairie, a 23.5-acre remnant sand prairie on the outskirts of Prairie du Sac, has been one big exercise in repaying some of the attention I owe to wild places and beings. Here is my story of paying down the staggering debt.

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Herbicide Stick Applicator: The Makutu

Everyone needs a good applicator for the variety of herbicides used in prairie and savanna restoration and conservation. The Makutu is the answer to all the applicator problems you have had in the past. Here I provide a description of this device the Glacial Prairies Chapter has developed at the request of one of Glacial Prairie Chapter’s stellar volunteers.

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NIPE Seed Shed Doings, October 2018

These days I am spending a lot of time in the seed shed as the mountains of harvested seed roll in. We are in the ‘fluff and stuff’ stage of seed processing. 

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TPE Leadership Retreat - Why are you inspired?

As prairie enthusiasts, why do we do what we do? This is one of the challenging questions that was discussed at the recent leadership retreat. 

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