Taking Your Garden Back to Iowa’s Roots

May 1, 2015

Prairie rehabilitation has become an important part of restoring native plants and wildlife in many communities. One noticeable change in recent years is that many prairies are being grown on a smaller scale, in urban environments and backyards across Iowa.

On this Horticulture Day edition of Talk of Iowa, host Charity Nebbe is joined by Brad Riphagen and Patty Petersen, field coordinators for Trees Forever, as they discuss their work with prairie reconstruction. Horticulturist Richard Jauron also joins the conversation to answer listener questions.

Riphagen and Petersen’s primary focus is Trees Forever, but heir work extends far beyond the branches of Iowa’s saplings.

“We do get involved with not only trees, but also shrubs, native flowers and plants, and native grasses,” Petersen said. “We understand the connectedness of nature and how all of those plants together help promote a healthy future and create ecosystem services for ourselves and all the other little creatures that we share the earth with.”

Riphagen says one of the things that drew him to native plants was his Iowa background.

“It is part of my heritage, being an Iowan, that I can plant these plants that are native to my state,” he said.

To learn more about native planting, you can visit the Plant Iowa Native website.