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TEN LOCAL

PRAIRIES TO VISIT

NATURE IS OUR GREATEST INSPIRATION

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1.

Brimfield Railroad Restoration Prairie

W Forney Rd, Brimfield, IL 61517
40.872798, -89.883773

Directions from Brimfield:
2 miles north on N Brimfield Rd (Jefferson St)
¼ mile east on W Forney Rd.
There are 3 grain bins on the corner of W Forney Rd and N Brimfield Rd.
Entrance/parking is on the south side of the road.

Comments:
This prairie remnant is a long, narrow strip between fields. There is a lone sentinel tree not too far from the entrance. Compass plant and golden alexanders are plentiful. Gentians and prairie milkweed are present.

2.

Henry Allan Gleason Nature Preserve

Topeka, IL 61567
40.377898, -89.923470

Directions from Topeka:
1 mile north on Co Rd 2350 E/Topeka Rd
0.2 mile east on Co Rd 2000N/E Manito Rd
2 miles north on Co Rd 2300 E
Entrance is on the west side of the road.

Comments:
There is a mowed path around and into the sand prairie. Dry lichen balls, Goat’s rue, and June grass are some of the species present.
Hiking trails are available at nearby Sand Ridge State Forest. (more sand prairie)

3.

Singing Woods Nature Preserve/Tawny Oaks Visitor Center

715 W Singing Woods Rd
Edelstein, IL 61526

Comments:
There is a gravel path around and through a prairie planting, and assorted trails through the woods. Trails lead to a virgin hill prairie with prairie phlox, bird’s foot violet and hoary puccoon. Virginia bluebells, trilliums, large-flowered bellwort, and blue cohosh are present. This is a good place to go in the spring for a lovely display of spring wildflowers.

4.

Greenlee Cemetery Prairie Nature Preserve

12500 Co Rd 36
Cambridge, IL 61238
41.331569, -90.106265

Directions from Cambridge:
4 miles east of Cambridge on Rt. 81
2.5 north on Co Rd 36
The preserve is on the east side of the road.

Comments:
This preserve is a one-acre virgin prairie in rural Cambridge. Indian Grass, Big Bluestem and heath aster are present.

5.

Mineral Marsh Nature Preserve

28338 N 2050th Ave
Annawan, IL 61234
41.445210, -89.887454

Directions from Annawan:
3 miles north on IL-78
1 mile east on N 2050th Ave.

Comments:
You must climb over a gate to get into this big sandy soil nature preserve located across the road from a large beef cattle operation. Plenty of Little Bluestem thrives here, along with a scattering of Sand Evening Primrose. There are hills, flat areas, and a low-lying wet area.

6.

Merwin Nature Preserve

Lexington, IL 61753
40.666223, -88.899113

Directions from Interstate 55 exit at Lexington:
5.5 miles west on Co Hwy 8/PJ Keller Hwy
0.7 miles north on N1925 East Rd
Parking lot on east side of the road after you cross the Mackinaw River.
The trail system begins at this parking lot.

Comments:
Merwin Nature Preserve includes savannah and hill prairie, and abundant quantities of sweet joe-pye-weed. Don’t miss the beautiful spring bluebell show!

7.

 Weston Cemetery Prairie Nature Preserve

33900 US-24, Chenoa, IL 61726
40.742733, -88.613168

Directions from Weston intersection of Hwy. 24:
0.5 mile east on Hwy 24
0.3 mile north on the entrance road
Small parking lot at end of entrance road.

Comment:
Prairie Dropseed, along with nearly one hundred other native plant species, can be found in this tallgrass, black-soil prairie.

8.

Forest Park Nature Center – South Trail

5809 N Forest Park Dr., Peoria Heights, IL 61616

Comments:
The trail to the large hill prairie starts across the road from the entrance to Forest Park Nature Center.
False boneset and sideoats grama are an example of native species found in this remnant.

9.

Spring Grove Cemetery Prairie Nature Preserve

798 60th St, Monmouth, IL 61462
41.008056, -90.630264

Directions from Monmouth:
7 miles north on US-67 N
1/8 mile west on 260 Ave/60th St
The cemetery is on the north side of the road.

Comments:
Gravestones are hidden in the prairie grass of this prairie remnant, which is dominated by Sawtooth sunflower. False boneset has been sighted here.

10.

Old Scotch Cemetery Prairie

Victoria, IL 61485
41.021065, -90.126999

Directions from Victoria:
1.5 miles west on IL-167
.6 mile south on 1650 E
Cemetery entrance is on the west side of the road.

Comments:
Prairie willow and Bottle gentian are found in this prairie remnant located next to the Old Scotch Cemetery.

You can find more information and options in the Nature Preserve Directory on the DNR website.

https://www.dnr.illinois.gov/INPC/Pages/NaturePreserveDirectory.aspx

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