Upcoming Events

Monthly Update – May 2018

Marsh Marigolds (Caltha palustris)












Greetings Friends of the Prairie,


April was one of the coldest on record and, it seems, we are about to set a record for one of the wettest Springs on record! It doesn’t affect the life of the Prairie as long as the days get longer (and it stays above freezing). Many of the spring flowers have begun to bloom, especially in areas
burned last Fall or this Spring. Among them are Shooting Stars, Hoary Puccoon, Wood Betony, Pussy Toes, Violets, Golden Alexander and many sedges, mushrooms and ferns. Come alone or join one of the walks listed in the events section below to see this marvelous Spring unveiling. While you are out there, listen for the exuberant cries of the Sandhill Cranes nesting far south.

One of the critical factors in keeping Chiwaukee Prairie healthy is groundwater recharge. Modeling by the U.S. Geological Survey showed that groundwater levels could drop as much as several feet if the lands west of the railroad, south of 116th Street, were developed into housing. Learning this, The Nature Conservancy of Wisconsin has been buying vacant agricultural land west of the Prairie. Long story short, they now own nearly 155 contiguous acres which they plan to restore in the next five years! What a tremendous continuing effort to put together funding and planning for acquisition and restoration of this incredibly important tract of land. For over 50 years, TNC has been a great Friend of the Prairie!


Naturalist Kay McClelland will lead Chiwaukee Prairie Walks three times a month from May to September. Information includes a little history, a little geology and lots of plant names and facts. Over the summer we will look at and identify more than 100 different flowering plants, grasses and some sedges. I will have a plant list available each time as well as occasional other handouts.

Third Monday Third Thursday Third Saturday
6-8 PM or sunset: 9-11 AM 9-11 AM
May 21 May 17 May 19
June 18 June 21 June 16
July 16 July 19 July 21
August 20 August 16 August 18
September 20 September 15

For the May walks, we will meet at the intersection of 121st Street and 2nd Avenue. Park on 2nd Avenue. Wear good walking shoes or boots and long pants. Sun screen, insect repellent for possible ticks, and a hat are wise. We go in light rain but not if there is lightning.

Kay McClelland, Naturalist
262-994-1939 (Mobile)
kaymac1939 @ gmail.com

Annual Native Plant Sale by Wild Ones Root River Chapter
Adding even a few native plants to your property can help increase habitat for native birds, bees, butterflies and other wildlife. Save the date and buy plants in twos so they multiply!

Saturday, June 2nd 9:00 AM until 2:00PM
Native flowers, grasses, ferns, trees and shrubs
Gateway Technical College Horticulture Center 3520 30th Avenue Kenosha


Our “all ages” volunteers in April; Chad, Sasha, Clarence and Nathan. Photo by Lindy VanVlissingen














This Saturday, May 19, we switch from cutting and herbiciding invasive brush to pulling the despised and very invasive Garlic Mustard. While first year leaves are delicious in salads, the flowering second year plants are a threat to the savanna and prairie producing 100s of seeds per plant. The prediction is for partly cloudy skies with a slight breeze off the Lake and a high of 68 degrees. It likely will be somewhat wet conditions getting into the savanna. Wear old clothes, long pants and sturdy shoes or boots. It is tick season, so consider bug spray. We supply work gloves, tools, water, instruction and answers to all your questions about the Prairie. We will work unless there is lightning in the area. The workday is from 10 AM – 1 PM. Come for part or all of it.

SPECIAL REQUEST: Please bring us your empty half gallon milk/cider jugs.

We will meet along 4th Avenue north of 115th Street.
Please park on the east side of 4th Avenue.

(Map of the vicinity at www.chiwaukee.org/about/where/)

Starting in June, we will have extra workdays to control several invasives before they go to seed. If you would like to be notified about additional workday opportunities, plant scouting opportunities or plant identification walks, please email volunteer@chiwaukee.org.

Workday cancellations will be posted on our website and Facebook by 8 AM on scheduled workdays. If you are unsure whether a workday will take place, please use good judgment when deciding whether to attend.

If you have questions, email volunteer@chiwaukee.org or call 773-515-2772.

Thank you for your support,
Chiwaukee Prairie Preservation Fund, Inc.