Southwest Chapter is in the heart of the Driftless Area of southwestern Wisconsin. The area contains dry hill prairies, river terrace sand and wet prairies, and oak savannas. We have many TPE-owned properties that require our care in managing and restoring. Our chapter was one of the first chapters formed, and we have a rich history!  

The Southwest chapter covers Grant, Crawford, Richland, and Iowa Counties in Wisconsin. We invite you to join us!

Learn more by visiting About our chapter and Sites and projects web pages.

Chapter contact:  Rose Sime,, 608-831-9297
Board representative:  Gary Eldred, (608) 375-5271
Facebook:  Chapter page

What's New

Field Trips

Date:  June 15, 2019
Time:  10 am - noon
Where:  Feist prairie

Though small, Feist Prairie contains a large number of species on land never cultivated, pastured, or sprayed.

This 3 acre remnant was purchased in 2013 and is managed by the Southwest Chapter.

Tour leader:  Gary Eldred will lead the tour and tell us about the history, prairie plant diversity, restoration methods and long term goals.

Access & directions
Turn east on County Road E off Highway 61 between Lancaster and Fennimore. Go through Stitzer to Ridge Road and turn right (south) to Sleepy Hollow Road and turn left (east). The prairie is on the right side.


Date:  July 21, 2019

Time:  12:30 pm - 3pm

Where:  Iris Drive 

Join us after the Annual Membership Picnic to view the Southwest Chapter's newest prairie, Iris Drive.

Gary Eldred will lead us on a hike on the two remnants, focusing on the west unit, that was newly cleared, to see what is coming up this year. We will talk about the the history of Iris Drive Prairie, plant diversity, restoration methods and long tern goals for the adjoining oak woodlands.

Access & directions

The address for the site is 18663 West River Road, Gays Mills, WI 54631.

From the village of Gays Mills, WI drive west on HW 171. As you cross the Kickapoo River take the immediate next left onto River Road. Continue south for 2 miles to Iris Drive on your right. You have now arrived at the property. The rural route number is posted along River Road a few hundred feet south of the intersection.

To access the prairies, turn right onto Iris Drive and continue for 1,000 feet. There is a farm lane entrance on your right that you can turn into and park off of the road. As you walk north on the farm lane, the eastern prairie that has been restored since 2012 is on your right, and the western prairie that has been restored since 2016 is on your left.


Gary Eldred interview on WRCO radio show  The Morning Show recently featured Gary talking about prairies. Have a listen.