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Sustainability of the Prairie Garden at The University of Illinois College of Veterinary Medicine

Posted by Morgan White on May 12, 2014

In 1820, Illinois contained 22 million acres of prairie, but due to modern intensive agricultural practices, only a few thousand remain today. Of high quality, remnant prairie, there are only 2,300 acres which mostly persist along railroads, in cemeteries, and in ground that is not fit for farming (DNR, 2014). Prairies are part of the history and culture of Illinois. The rich soils that grow so much food for people all over the country were formed under prairie landscapes. These grassland habitats have a lot of potential to continue providing ecosystem services for the citizens of Illinois, but first we have to recognize those ecosystem services and realize the value of the sustainability of prairie landscapes. Faculty at the University of Illinois Veterinary School and at the Illinois Natural History Survey have aimed to do just that through a prairie restoration project on the Veterinary Medicine campus.

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