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…Same, but Different…

This is my 22nd year at Prairie Restorations, Inc. I can finally say that the years are starting to gel together. Time goes by one day at a time and, without even thinking about it, it has been twenty-two years. During my time working with native landscapes, I’ve really come to appreciate their variability. Each year there can be significant variations in a landscape all influenced by a combination of factors including weather, predation, human influences, etc…One year, there can...

Feedback from a Native Prairie Landscaping Restoration Customer

Worth the Wait! (Editor’s note: It’s always great to hear feedback from our customers. Recently Bill Matthaei, a customer that is working with our Bluestem Farm near Hawley, MN, kindly took the time to tell us about his experiences. Bill’s comments wonderfully illustrate how being patient is a very important part of the process when working with native landscapes. The photos shown below are from Bill’s property.) I’m glad Tyler Luedke and Blaine Keller, project managers at Prairie Restorations, advised me that it would take three to four years before my replanted native prairie grasses and flowers would begin to really...

Diversity and Richness of Minnesota Wetlands

The Boreal Natives’ seed department has been busy the last two weeks picking wetland seed species. We have been targeting sedges and have mainly focused on Carex retrorsa (Knot sheathed sedge) and Carex vulpinoidea (Fox sedge). When sloshing around northern Minnesota wetlands picking seed, you are able to experience firsthand these important ecosystems. We have been seeing many different insects, birds and frogs. The diversity of a quality wetland ecosystem is truly amazing. Our recent wetland visits have reaffirmed to me how important...

Native Landscaping Restoration Tips: Protecting Against Erosion

As many of us recently experienced, this time of year is prone to strong storms and heavy rains. When embarking on a new seeding project, it is crucial to plan for the possibility of erosion and what steps might need to be taken. This is especially true given the slow nature of native species establishment. Otherwise, all of your hard work, time and money can be literally washed down the drain. So what are the most common and effective erosion control tools used in restoration? ...

Timing is Everything With IPM – integrated plant management

Sand prairies were restored to the PRI Princeton farm from corn fields and they are beautiful. Sometimes I think about starting one of those projects photographing for 365 days in one spot. For me it would be the little knoll in front of the Native Plant Center. IPM is crucial to maintaining authenticity of even large restored native plant communities. Opportunistic annual and short-lived perennial species abound in our world and invade from edges to centers of restored areas without persistent scouting...

Bringing People Together With The Land

As an employee of PRI for over two years now, I have heard and seen our slogan, “bringing people together with the land” many times. Not only is it catchy and on the bottom of all of my email signatures, but it is also rather fitting for a company like ours. I have never really stopped to think about it until the other day while I was working in my own little prairie at home. Last year, my wife and I decided to replace a small flower bed in the middle of...

Greetings From The Scandia Store

As we turn from the unusual spring into seemingly summer this week, nature sure keeps us on our toes! If you are one of the fortunate who is heading up to the lake and are tired of mowing at home and at your cabin retreat, stop into one of our stores to get some ideas on how to make that a thing of the past. There are a lot great shrubs, plants and grasses that can help you achieve a beautiful landscape that is low maintenance. There are many benefits to adding...

Sedge Seed Collection at PRI

There are two main sedges I collect seed for in the fall. Carex lupulina, also known as Hop sedge, grows in sunny to shady conditions, in wet to mesic soils. It is a good choice for rain gardens, along swamp edges and lake shore. It has an interesting hop-like seed head. Seed heads form in July and start turning brown when ripe in later September. Seeds from sedges are an important food source for birds and turtles. Carex grayi, also known as Common bur sedge, grows in...

Interview with Mike Evenocheck, Director of Sales & Marketing at Our Native Landscaping Company

Mike Evenocheck  Editor’s Note: With fall just around the corner, change is definitely in the air.  There are also some changes at our Midwest native landscaping company.  We recently talked with PRI’s Director of Sales & Marketing, Mike Evenocheck, and he brought us up to date on some of the exciting things happening...

This Is My Time To Care For What I Can

Finally watched the last leaves of a dying tree, a pin oak, blow off in the spring breeze. The health of the tree was in steady decline starting only about a year ago. The passing was abrupt, not entirely expected, and left us with a few decent weekends of sawing, splitting, hauling brush and logs. Spare time and sticktoitiveness is not the entire cost however. Given the close proximity to the house and pole shed, we had to have it dropped in pieces by a contractor with a...