A high school Service Learning Day is having a long term impact, as a school joins with community members to restore prairie land flowers.
New Richmond High School plant science students will help rebuild the area’s prairie by plangting wild lupine and sideoats grama with community members. It is the fifth year in a row that the school will do this.
“We are hoping to bring back or see an increase in the population of Karner Blue Butterflies,” teacher Rachel Sauvola said. “It is really awesome that our seeds grew as well as they did. We did one thing differently this year, which was to use the inoculant with the seeds. We had four trays that we are germinating this year, but we could have easily had eight to 10 with how well everything grew.”
Community members were invited to help transplant thousands of wild lupine plants.
“The reason the community members were invited in was because we just had far more plants to transplant by themselves,” Sauvola said. “It would take us days and days to do the work that the community folks did today.”
At the conclusion of the project, between 10,000 and 15,000 plants will be restored to the native prairie. The sideoats grama seeds were harvested from the first plants the students grew from seed during the first year of the project.
On Earth Day, April 22, Sauvola and high school and fifth grade students will plan trees at several different sites around New Richmond.