Prudenterra combines field experience with academic training to help guide successful reconstructions and manage existing prairies. We can help create your prairie establishment plan, prepare your site for seeding, reconstruct a wetland, broadcast seed, mow, apply herbicide, and conduct a prescribed fire.
Revitalize your prairie with a management tool that has been used for thousands of years. Fire discourages weeds and woody species, while reinvigorating native, fire-adapted prairie plants (75% of whose biomass is below ground). Following a burn, mineral-rich ash is deposited on the soil surface where it aids new growth of native prairie plants. The blackened soil quickly warms and facilitates new prairie seed germination.
Prudenterra has a decade of experience conducting prescribed fires, and crew members are trained by the National Wildfire Coordinating Group. Our prescribed fires are insured, and safety is our top priority. We keep fires within burn boundaries by employing techniques such as firebreaks and backfires, carefully monitoring weather and atmospheric conditions, and using specialized fire suppression equipment: water sprayers, flappers (smotherers), leaf blowers, and rakes.
Seeding and Site Preparation
Set your prairie up for success by selecting the right seed for your site, and seeding it onto the soil surface as nature does. We can help you select a diverse, locally adapted seed mix, and then broadcast it for you with a specialized Vicon® seeder.
A well-prepared seedbed is critical to ensure prairie establishment success. We can help you terminate existing vegetation with herbicide or tillage. Then, we can smooth out uneven ground with a disk and cultipacker to facilitate mowing during establishment.
Mowing and Maintenance
Prevent weeds from shading out young prairie seedlings in the first one to three years of establishment with regular mowing. Prudenterra can help determine when mowing is needed based on weed pressure and development, and conduct the mowing if assistance is needed. In addition, we can manage aggressive weeds such as crown vetch and non-native cool-season grasses by judiciously applying herbicide.
Restore 10% of your crop fields to diverse, native prairie to reduce soil erosion, improve water quality, and provide habitat for wildlife. Prudenterra can help you implement each step in the process: design and layout, seeding and seed mix selection, prescribed burning, mowing, spraying, and accessing financial assistance.
Wetland reconstruction information can be found under Water Management–Earthworks.