Prescribed prairie burnAdd to Cart Add to Lightbox Download
Prairie grasses in the Kansas Flint Hills, like this pasture in Chase County, 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. Less than four percent of the original 140 million acres of tallgrass prairie remains in North America. Most of the remaining tallgrass prairie is in the Flint Hills in Kansas. The prairie has survived here because the soil is heavily laden with limestone and chert (commonly called flint) making it unsuitable for plowing. This rocky soil, combined with a cycle of wildfires and animal grazing has preserved the tallgrass prairie.
- © 2011 John L. Dengler
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America Chase County 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