Wednesday, August 06, 2008

The Schulenberg Prairie in Summer!

My recent visit to the Schulenberg Prairie on an August morning with some Arboretum colleagues was a treat! This prairie restoration found on the west side of The Morton Arboretum was started in 1962 under the nurturing hand of Ray Schulenberg. On our recent visit, the group was greeted by countless drifts of grasses and forbs –- many in bloom. What better way to view and study rattlesnake master, prairie dock, compass plant, big bluestem, Indian grass or lead plant then by witnessing them under a blue Illinois sky? As our group walked through the prairie, I started to consider the remarkable record of how these native plants were used by various communities of people. The Sterling Morton Library has quite an interesting collection of ethnobotanical works to peruse including:

  • Cherokee plants and their uses : a 400 year history by Paul B. Hamel and Mary U. Chiltoskey
  • Edible wild plants of the prairie : an ethnobotanical guide by Kelly Kindscher
  • Ethnobotany of the Forest Potawatomi Indians by Huron H. Smith
  • Ethnobotany of the Ojibwe Indians by Huron H. Smith
  • How Indians use wild plants for food, medicine and crafts by Frances Denmore
  • Indian uses of native plants by Edith Van Allen Murphey
  • Medicinal wild plants of the prairie : an ethnobotanical guide by Kelly Kindscher
  • Native American ethnobotany by Daniel E. Moerman
  • Prairie smoke : a collection of lore of the prairies by Melvin Gilmore
  • Uses of plants by the Indians of the Missouri River Region by Melvin R. Gilmore

Before or after your visit the Schulenberg Prairie, stop by the Sterling Morton Library and discover this rich collection of resources!

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