Explore Kansas Prairies

Join us in gathering seed, observing birds and insects, and identifying prairie plants on high quality prairie remnants.  All ages are welcome.  Leave the Dyck Arboretum at 4:00 p.m. and return by twilight.  Fee: $5, children under 14 are free.  Call 620-327-8127 to reserve a spot.  Bring a sandwich and enjoy the sun setting over the prairie.

Prairie is our native Kansas landscape and the percentage that we have remaining is more than any other state in the country.  Roughly four percent of the remaining tallgrass prairie in our nation is still intact, and 95% of this prairie is in Kansas.  A small Kansas prairie remnant can host hundreds of plant species, hundreds of bird, mammal, amphibian, and reptile species, and thousands of insect species.  Not only does this prairie provide an exceptional refugia of biological diversity, it offers so much more.  Consider the multiple layers of prairie benefits to Kansans:

  • an efficient model for urban environmental landscaping where species provide beauty, and wildlife habitat, while thriving under existing climatic conditions
  • water filter buffers for streams and rivers that clean, store, and slowly release water more efficiently than agricultural and urban environments
  • a powerful carbon sink storing carbon in its massive root system to help slow climate change
  • plants that offered medicines and foods to Native Americans and pioneers of yesteryear and still today with herbal supplements and grazing livestock
  • native landscapes that were a central to the lives and cultures of our ancestors and that link us to our natural history

There is so much to learn and enjoy on this native landscape of yours.  Come out and immerse yourself in it!