Diversity At The Manitoba Tall Grass Prairie Preserve

The Tall Grass Prairie is named after the characteristics of its three main species: Big Bluestem, Indian Grass, and Prairie Cordgrass. While the Tall Grass Prairie is a mixture of forbs and grasses, its diversity and variety is incredible. Each area of the Tall Grass Prairie is unique: whether one looks at a wet area, where a mixture of shrubs begin to mix in with the grasses, such as willow and trees, or the higher-up or dry areas with thin soils, characterized by Tall Grass Prairie species mixed in with some more delicate flowers, they are different.

In terms of management, the Tall Grass Prairie is a challenge. The Aspen Parkland forest in Manitoba is trying to replace the Tall Grass Prairie. That is, where the Tall Grass Prairie is composed of plants with very deep roots and not needing much water, due to their ability to thrive in dry environments, the Aspen Parkland is composed of shallow-rooted species that expand with water.

Fire, which has been used for thousands of years by Native communities to control the advent of Aspen, has been observed to be the most effective way to control the tree, as well as to revitalize the grasses. Indeed, fire has seen an increase in stem density in plants by 160%.

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