native plant faqs and resources

why are prairies important?

Prairies provide: 

  • Wildlife habitat-home to grassland birds, butterflies and many other beneficial insects.
  • Protect and enhance species diversity. 
  • Deep root systems hold soil and supports an abundance of microorganisms. 
  • The grass and wildflower root systems help to rebuild our soils. 

The Friends of Gottfried Prairie & Arboretum does not give guidance on maintaining privately owned prairies at this time.  However, we recommend the following resources:


  • Landscaping with Native Plants of Wisconsin by Lynn Steiner
  • Bringing Nature Home by Douglas Tallamy
  • Wisconsin Flora, 2nd edition, by Steve W. Chadde
  • Wildflowers of Wisconsin and the Great Lakes Region, 2nd edition, by Merel R. Black & Emmet J. Judziewicz
  • Gardening With Prairie Plants: How To Create Beautiful Native Landscapes by Sally Wasowski