"What a package of potential a seed is! Most of the prairie seeds I harvested weigh almost nothing but contain the genetic plans for a future.”
Nachusa volunteers and stewards collect 125+ seed species for both new and field–overseed plantings. Seed collection begins at Nachusa around mid–May and continues through the first week of November. This year 100 new acres will be planted to prairie and about a dozen stewards will overseed 150 acres or more on various newer restorations.
How much seed is needed to plant 100 acres to prairie this fall?
About 5,000 pounds!!!!
Equipped with buckets, bags, scissors and clippers, stewards and volunteers walk through the fields searching for mature seed. Harvesting seed by hand is time–consuming and labor intensive, but there are advantages. Some seeds are on tiny plants close to the ground and located on rocky slopes. The only way to harvest these is for collectors to crawl on their hands and knees to pick each seed individually.
I'm a retired librarian from NIU. I've been taking photos at Nachusa for over 20 years.
I am a nature photographer and freelance graphic designer. I have been taking photos for Nachusa since 2012.
I am the manager's daughter and a resident prairie critter. I currently attend Sauk Valley Community College and I have been drawing Nachusa my whole life.
I am a semi–retired teacher and the Steward of Nachusa's East Tellabs unit. I have returned to the grasslands after 30 years in the north.
I am a hobby naturalist who works with knowledgeable people to help restore native ecosystems at Nachusa and in the Forest Preserve District of Cook County.
Exotic And Invasive Plants