Summer in the LSII Prairie Garden

This summer we are working on a revamp of the LSII prairie garden. The garden has recently received some negative feedback, most comments center on the overabundance of Canada wildrye (Elymus canadensis) and other grasses. Since the accidental mowing incident and construction that has taken place around the garden there is an opportunity for us to make it look even better to attract positive attention for the club. Since the garden is so small it would be difficult for us to demonstrate a true prairie restoration. It has been suggested by Rob Rothrock and other prairie enthusiasts that we focus on making the garden more of a demonstration of how homeowners can incorporate native plants into their own gardens. We still want to keep our native grasses and other prairie plants, but the garden will certainly be more appealing to a broader audience if we put in more flowering plants particularly on the boarders. We have already taken steps to eliminate some of the wildrye. Our plan is to keep the center of the garden fairly wild looking, with tall prairie grasses and forbs and to transplant more forbs into the border. We thought that transplanting a number of grasses and forbs into the spaces left by the wildrye would keep more weedy species from popping up in its place and allow us to give the garden a more landscaped look. Rob Rothrock has kindly offered to let us take a few plants from his prairie.
We are working on a map of our plans for the garden. If you have any suggestions or if you are in Carbondale this summer and would like to help with some of the work (we will need help watering after we transplant!) let us know.

Work Day 4/16/12

Thanks to all of the awesome volunteers who showed up for the work day this past Sunday! We had a good turn out and got a lot of work done. We were able to clean up the path in CEHS Prairie and put down a new layer of mulch. We also removed partridge pea from a few areas in the prairie and put out some native seed. In the woods we removed a TON of garlic mustard, treated autumn olive and bush honeysuckle and spread native seed. See photos below including blue-eyed grass spotted in Campus Woods!

Campus Woods and Prairie Burn

Over spring break a group of Restoration Clubbers, with the help of the SIUC Fire Dawgs, burned CEHS Prairie and prepared the Campus Woods restoration for a future burn. The prairie burn was rather patchy due to moist conditions and the excess partridge pea. We are planning a work day in the near future to cut down the rest of the standing vegetation and herbicide any newly sprouting partridge pea. We are also, hoping to burn the Campus Woods restoration in the coming weeks now that we have a beautifully dug fire line. Look for more information about the work day, burn and seeding, coming soon!

Thanks to all of our volunteers and Dr. Ruffner for excellent burn coordination!

*Photographer – Amelia Merced-Alejandro

Campus Woods Work Day

Thanks to everyone who helped with the work day this past Saturday! We were able to treat a TON of multiflora rose and garlic mustard. A special thanks to Chris Evans for donating Garlon and a backpack sprayer as well as his sagely advice!

We are still hoping for a burn in the Campus Woods restoration over spring break so stay tuned for updates.

Seeds are IN!

Just got our seed order from Prairie Moon Nursery and Bluestem Nursery!

Cinna arundinacea (Wood Reed Grass), Hystrix patula (Bottlebrush Grass), Elymus virginicus (Virginia Wild Rye), Aster cordifolius (Heart-leaved Aster), Aster drummondii (Drummond’s Aster), Bidens frondosa (Common Beggar’s Ticks), Clematis virginiana (Virgin’s Bower), Helianthus divaricatus (Woodland Sunflower), and Solidago ulmifolia (Elm-leaved Goldenrod)!

This seed mix will be used this spring in the Campus Woods restoration.

Don’t forget about the Campus Woods work day this Saturday at 10 am! See the Upcoming Events page for more information.

Work Day

Thompson Woods Work Day

Saturday, November 19th at 1pm

Meet at Douglas Dr. and Poultry Center Dr. (near CEHS)

Activities to include: Woody plant removal, invasive plant removal, herbicide application

What to bring: Gloves, loppers and saws if you have them. Otherwise just bring yourselves!

We will also provide water, warm beverages and snacks!