New growth of burned tallgrass prairieAdd to Cart Add to Lightbox Download
New growth of recently burned grass grows in a prairie in the Flint Hills in Chase County near Clements, Kansas. Prairie grasses in the Flint Hills are intentionally burned by land mangers and cattle ranchers in the spring to prepare the land for cattle grazing and help maintain a healthy tallgrass prairie ecosystem. The burning is also an effective way of controlling invasive plants and trees. The prairie grassland is burned when the soil is moist but grasses are dry. This allows the deep roots of the grasses to survive and the burned grasses on the soil surface return as nutrients to the soil. These nutrients allow for the rapid growth of new grass. After approximately two weeks of burning, new grass emerges. This new grass is prized by cattle ranchers and their cattle for being high in protein allowing cattle to gain more weight, quicker than cattle in other areas of the country. While some land managers and cattle ranchers in the Flint Hills burn their grassland every year, it is considered better for the prairie ecosystem to skip one or two years to allow for a greater diversity of plants and protection for birds who nest in the tall prairie grasses.
- © 2011 John L. Dengler
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America Chase County Clements Flint Hills Kansas North America U.S. US USA United States United States of America controlled burn environment environmental issue fire flora grass grassland horizontal nature outdoors plant plants prairie prairie burn prairie fire prescribed burn scenery tall grass tallgrass tallgrass prairie
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- Flint Hills prairie - Kansas