Our Glorious Prairie

River Bend
Nature Center

download our prairie plants flyer

butterfly weed

River Bend's prairie, restored from corn field by dedicated volunteers and staff in the lat 1980's, has turned into a glorious nature center gem that blossoms with color every summer. While a few flowers or one kind or another appear throughout the season, the prairie truly peaks in color during late July and August when the grasses exhibit ever-changing hues, flowers spread like fire across the landscape, and butterflies dance in the air.

While we could never come close to fully representing the spectacle that our prairie presents, click the pictures below for a glimpse of what awaits your discovery! - JB


A monarch butterfly enjoys the flowers

The GROWS butterfly garden greets you by the lot

A variety of yellow flowers are the firth usually noticed

butterfly weed

Butterfly weed blooms in July

A view from the Interpretive Center

big bluestem

Big bluestem dominates that prairie...

"turkey foot"

...also known as 'turkey foot'

switch grass

switch grass and Indian grass also abound


Large-flowered beardtongue catches your eye in May and June

compass plant

Compass plants are the tallest of our flowers, up to 6 feet

yellow coneflower

Coneflowers are most abundant


Bergamot flows in patches

rattlesnake master

Rattlesnake masters rise mysteriously to perplex many a visitor

black-eyed susan

Black-eyed susans bloom just beneath the coneflowers


Yarrow grows with fern-like leaves

shooting stars

Shooting stars can bloom in early summer

little bluestem

Little bluestem ranges over the drier hillsides


Asters bloom into the fall


Milkweed grows along pond edge

daisy fleabane

Daisy fleabane, an alien, can be found along trail edges


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