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Prairie Ecosystems
Prairie Plants
Underground Prairie
Roots and Erosion
Roots Add Nutrients
Fertile Soils
Field Guide
Spring Flowering
Summer Flowering
Fall Flowering
All Plants
Prairie Peninsula
Illinois Prairies
Prairie Restoration
Planting a Prairie Garden
Human Voices
Inspiration for Art
Restoration Game
Teacher Orientation
Sand Prairie Scrub Oak Nature Preserve
Sand Prairie Scrub Oak Nature Preserve
"And spring did come! Overnight, it seemed, the prairie was dotted with pale lavender pasqueflowers. The sky was as the sky in Mothers painting. Tiny dickcissels swayed on top of the weeds and called to each other in high thin chirps. Wild geese flew far overhead, babbling to each other like a crowd of faraway people."
-from Brett Harvey's My Prairie Year: Based on the Diary of Elenore Plaisted
Here are some of the common prairie plants you can find in Illinois prairies. We have organized them according to the season when they will be blooming. 

We recommend that you use a field guide when you go into the field. This field guide is intended to give you a start in looking at flowers so that when you go out into a prairie, or meadow, or even when you are driving along the highway, you will be able to identify some of the different types of plants you may see. 

Native Americans and Europeans used the plants they found around the prairie to supplement their diet and cure their sicknesses. Modern medicine has found few of the North American prairie plants to be useful in curing contemporary illnesses. Understanding plant remedies requires specific research and also an understanding of the people who may have used plant remedies for many generations. 

We do not recommend trying these plants or using them to treat or cure anything. Most of the uses have not been tested or studied extensively, so we don't understand the possible side effects. We are providing the information as a way to understand how Native Americans and Europeans were using their environment and its resources. 

Spring Flowering

Summer Flowering

Fall Flowering

All Plants


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