Mollie (the wonder dog) and I were gallivanting around the local Winfield industrial park recently looking for treasure. I like to take Mollie out to where my workplace headquarters are in order for both of us to get exercise. Mollie a red border collie needs to have as much running and herding as she can get to stay happy, and I also like to search for native plant treasure. As you can see from the image below the difference between the mowed acreage to the right and the non-mowed to the left. The left being a vacant lot with piles of excavated soil from a water retention pond created in the background of the image. The owner has a manufacturing plant to the left of this lot. This year the company has decided not to mow this area except near the access road. I'm positive this is done not to let the prairie revive but to save money.
Therefore, by allowing the vegetation to grow the prairie has grown back to it's former glory. This image is taken in the other direction. Notice the manicured turf in the background with Pinus nigra and Quercus rubra trees near the access road. Now this is what border collies love! Mollie's barking:where's the sheep? All you give me to chase are squirrels!
What a beautiful scene. Prairie recovery at it's best with limited resources. Sure there are a few non natives and noxious weeds, but overall it's pure. Alchillea millefolium-western yarrow, Koeleria macrantha-June grass, Vicia villosa-hairy vetch, Psoralidium tenuiflorum-wild alfalfa, Amorpha canescens-Leadplant, Mimosa quadrivalvis - catclaw sensitive briar, Dalea purpurea- purple prairie clover and various other grasses, milkweeds, too numerous for me to ID.
I suppose beauty is in the eye of the beholder, however I don't understand why more people don't do this. Common yarrow and trifoliate clover.
Mimosa quadrivalvis-Catclaw Sensitive Briar, when you touch the leaves they shrink.
Koelera macrantha-June grass, Mimosa quadrivalvis-Catclaw sensitive plant, and Downy brome.
Delphinium carolinianum-Prairie Larkspur
Ahh, time to find treasure in this pile of debris.
What ya got in the truck Mr. Nelson, my wife asked when I returned?
Why treasure of course, mate!
I'm happy to say everything has survived except the Snow on the Moutain(which I'm sure is too aggressive anyways).