Adopt-a-Prairie Plot Program @ Neal Smith National Wildlife Refuge

Neal Smith National Wildlife Refuge  · 

Are you, your family, group or organization looking for something to do together outdoors this summer? Are you interested in helping to reconstruct a part of Iowa’s natural history? Do you want to take part in a valuable community service project? If so, check out the Adopt-a-Prairie Plot program at Neal Smith National Wildlife Refuge! We are recruiting participants for the 2019 season. Please contact us to find out how to participate in this rewarding program!

The goal of the Adopt-a-Prairie Plot program is to improve the quality of the prairie plantings along our Overlook Trail for the enjoyment of our visitors and the continued enhancement of the prairie. The program is perfect for families, friends, clubs, or other organized groups (church, scout, neighborhood, youth, etc.). Participants can be any age and do not need any prior knowledge about the prairie. This program is a fun way to get your group together for a meaningful outdoor, community service activity.

You will become the caretaker for a 50 foot by 25 foot plot of reconstructed prairie adjacent to the Overlook Trail. Your responsibilities will include spreading seeds and planting seedlings of native plants in May and June, watering the seedlings as necessary, and removing invasive species throughout the growing season (May-September). You must commit to having someone tend your plot at least 2 times per month during these months; you may work any day, anytime from sunrise to sunset.

The Refuge provides all equipment and plants. A staff member or one of our many experienced volunteers will provide training. You will be trained during your first workday, and staff are always available, via email, phone or in person during business hours, to help or answer questions.

If you are part of a group, all group members need not be present each time – many hands make light work, so divide it up as it fits into everyone’s busy summer schedules.

If you would like to find out more about this exciting program or sign up, please contact Nancy Corona by phone at 515-994-3444 or by e-mail at Nancy_corona@fws.gov. Neal Smith National Wildlife Refuge is located just 20 miles east of Des Moines on Hwy 163 near Prairie City.

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