Plant types and subtypes: Prairie Seed Mix
Light Requirements: sun
Water Use: low
Soil Moisture: dry, moist
Hardiness Zone: 4, 5, 6, 7
Pricing & Availability
Native Prairie Seed MixAlso known as:
Corn Belt Plains-type prairie,
“Native Harvest” seed collection
When implementing a plan to plant a meadow, consider this:
• Is the seed sourced from mono-cropped production fields?
• Is the seed cleaned and denuded of essential chemicals that are required for good germination?
• Is the diversity in the seed mix a true representation of a stable, functioning prairie, or just a landscape designer's wishful vision?
Real meadows exist in a polyculture where the plant communities mutually support each other in germination, balance of species and good genetic diversity. Artificially reconstructed mixes often don't take into account the beautifully complex systems within a prairie, involving plants, insects, microbes, and animals. Meadows are intelligent, and species within them communicate and evolve as a single organism. Piecing together a meadow from parts (individual seeds) is like making a person from parts.
This seed mix comes from a beautiful, never plowed, weed-free, remnant meadow. It is the prairie equivalent of an old growth forest where the plants have merged together as a sustainable community, down to the genetic level, over a period of measured in millennia.
As opposed to a monoculture harvest, these seeds have been collected using the “native harvest” technique, which means the meadow itself is harvested at an optimal time such that the mix is a "copy" of the original prairie that once covered North America. It is becoming evident that in an effort to supply “clean” seeds, free of chaff and weeds, the monoculture harvest process removes critical protective layers and ultimately leads to lower germination rates. In contrast, this “native harvest” seed is retained in hull form and plant material is left in the mix for easy planting as well as germination support. In other words, this mix is harvested in the way nature would do it herself. There is nothing artificial about it.
Expect a beautiful prairie with color and depth that only an authentic seed mix can provide.
This mix is an exact copy of the once dominant, and all but extinct, Corn Belt Plains-type prairie. It is suitable for any mesic, well-drained (even sandy) soil, with full sun exposure, and within hardiness zones of 4 to 7.
The recommended coverage is 1,000 square feet per pound.
The timing of the seed harvest is optimized to provide an ideal 50/50 balance of grasses and forbs.
Below is the list of the dominant species included in the mix:
Amorpha canescens (leadplant)
Lespedeza capitata (roundhead bush clover)
Monarda fistulosa (wild bergamot, beebalm)
Echinacea pallida (pale purple coneflower)
Ratibida pinnata (yellow coneflower, grayhead coneflower)
Asclepias tuberosa (butterfly milkweed)
Asclepias syriaca (common milkweed)
Eryngium yuccifolium (rattlesnake master)
Heliopsis helianthoides (false sunflower)
Vernonia baldwinii (Baldwin’s ironweed, western ironweed)
Solidago altissima (late goldenrod)
Oligoneuron rigidum (stiff goldenrod)
Artemisia frigida (prairie sagewort)
Achillea millefolium (common yarrow)
Pycnanthemum virginianum (Virginia mountainmint)
Verbena stricta (blue vervain, hoary vervain)
Andropogon gerardii (big bluestem)
Schizachyrium scoparium (little bluestem)
Sorghastrum nutans (Indiangrass)
Elymus canadensis (Canada wildrye)
Sporobolus heterolepis (prairie dropseed)
Sporobolus compositus (composite dropseed)
Panicum virgatum (switchgrass)
Native Range & Classification
Recorded County Distribution: USDA data
|Species||Native Prairie Seed Mix||Corn Belt Plains-type prairie|