Nature News: Using fire to regenerate the prairie – Osage County Online | Osage County News

Nature News: Using fire to regenerate the prairie


By Chris, LHS Junior

With construction completed on the new Jones Park Trail at Lyndon, the land around the trail will have to be burned. Burning is essential in growth of new prairie grass. It gets rid of old growth that blocks the sun, and it puts organic nutrients into the soil.

The trail will most likely be burned this spring, and won’t be burned again for another year or two. Weststar Energy Green Team member Brad Loveless, the Lyndon-area volunteer fire department, and some students might be helping with the burning of the trail this spring.

If one were to see the trail now, they would think it looks awful, but later in the spring after it has been burned, people will flock like birds to come and see the beautiful green grass.

Usually started naturally by lightning, fire burns all in its path until reaching a river or creek wide enough to stop it. Indians burned the land to attract buffalo, so they could ambush them and kill them. They also burned the land to make blackened campgrounds so that when there was a wild fire, their homes would be safe.

Now, the prairie around the Jones Park Trail will be burned to rid the area of invading annuals and so that the grass becomes more green and luscious.

Burning will help the trail look better and probably attract more animals due to the growth of more food and fresh grass.

Come see the new Jones Park Trail, which is behind the baseball diamonds at Jones Park.

Nature News is a project of the Lyndon High School English III class taught by Heather Fuller, who teaches English, drama and forensics. Along with the study of the works of famous authors, the junior students are learning about community-based writing. Coursework includes writing about subjects that will benefit readers. In Nature News, they plan to report on topics about appreciation of nature, using nearby Jones Park Trail as a learning tool.

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