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Prairie

Living Laboratory

Prairie - Savanna - Forest

Prairie is Washington State’s most rapidly disappearing and threatened ecosystem.  Currently, prairie land comprises less than 3% of the original acreage.  Loss of habitat and lack of fire over the past 175 years are major factors.  There is a significant and immediate need to restore prairie and savanna to protect and enhance the quality of all life.  We all, humans and wildlife, depend on healthy, diverse ecosystems for our very survival.

We are restoring habitat on our 175 acre precious jewel of Central Whidbey and also support ecological restoration efforts throughout the Puget Sound region. The prairie at PRI contains a precious five-acre remnant that has not been significantly disturbed since colonization.  It is very biodiverse and with a large number of rare and threatened native plant species.  These in turn support and interact with microorganisms in our soils as well as insects and arthropods, many of whom serve as critical pollinators.

PRI also has rare savanna land and two unique forest zones with trails open to the public which weave among them.

Our habitat restoration work includes:

* producing native plants in our Native Plant Center 

* sourcing and collecting seed from wild and propagated native plants

* processing and storing seeds 

* preparing land (mowing, cover cropping, controlled burns)

* out-planting native plants including grasses, forbs, shrubs and trees (like the Garry oak)

* engaging volunteers 

* public education and awareness building

Much of this work is labor intensive and depends largely on volunteers who are committed to enhancing the quality of life in our community

If you would like to join our restoration efforts, call us to learn of volunteer opportunities or give financially to support this important work 

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