Discover the Gottfried Prairie and Arboretum

The Friends of the Gottfried Prairie and Arboretum (FOGPA) welcome you to a hidden gem of Fond du Lac County! As a non-profit organization, FOGPA is committed to the preservation of the native plant community of wildflowers, grasses, and trees plus the promotion of the GP&A as a recreation and environmental education destination.

When the first settlers came to the Fond du Lac County area, it was covered by 36,000 acres of native prairie plus scattered forests and wetlands. These native grasslands were home to bison, prairie chickens, bobolinks and other wildlife. Due to the prairies being plowed in the mid to late 1800’s and other changes over the past 150+ years, most of the native prairie has been lost. At the Gottfried Prairie and Arboretum, adjacent to the University of Wisconsin Oshkosh, Fond du Lac campus, a group of volunteers reestablished the native plants that once grew on this site.

At present, the Gottfried has over 50 acres of restored native prairie established with seed collected from remnants from some of the last remaining original prairie sites in Fond du Lac County. The diversity and scale of the site has attracted many species of invertebrates, birds, and small mammals that lived here at the time of early settlement.

The formal arboretum is an innovative attempt to depict the native plants and plant communities of Wisconsin in a design representing the “Tension Zone” of our state.  The tension zone is the area of overlap of northern and southern Wisconsin plant communities, which occurs in the Fond du Lac area. It consists of southern hardwood forests, oak savanna, prairie, pine savanna, lowland forests, northern conifer- hardwood forests and boreal forests, plus their associated wildflowers. 

Discover and explore not only the prairie and arboretum but also our interpretive trails, bike trail, and wildlife pond.  To find out more details and maps, click on our Visit Us page.


Friends of the Gottfried 9th Annual Native Plant Sale is now OPEN!

Our native plant sale offers over 130 wildflowers, 8 types of sedges, 13 different native grasses, and 11 native ferns!  So many varieties to choose from and you can mix and match.  You can buy a variety of different plants vs having to buy a full (32) or half (16) flat of the same species!  Plus, we offer 5 different size options to choose from based on your budget and how large of a plant you are seeking.

Download the order form and have fun shopping and dreaming!  To learn more about native plants, check out our Native Plant FAQs & Resources page under About Us.

Order forms must be postmarked by March 28th See form for details.  Plant pickup will be Saturday, May 4th, 9am-noon at the Gottfried Prairie Shelter, adjacent to UW-Oshkosh, Fond du Lac campus.

Quick Links

Interested in events, educational opportunities, or how to get involved with the Friends of the Gottfried Prairie and Arboretum?  Click on the quick links below and follow us on Facebook.

prairie fest


Visit our events page to see about our upcoming events.

Learn About Our Events…

aerial view

Visit Us

Visit us to connect with nature. Enjoy native wildflowers, trees, and wildlife while exploring our trails and ponds.

Visit Us…

Halloween hike

Get Involved

Learn about how to get involved with our organization.

Get Involved…