JOPLIN, MO.--- Environmentalists are starting the beginning stages of a prairie reconstruction in Joplin. With containers filled and seed in hand, volunteers and staff with the Wildcat Glades Conservation and Audubon Center got to work.
"This is, to my knowledge, the first example of where a city property has undertaken a green practice like this," said Chris Pistole, Wildcat Glades Conservation and Audubon Center.
Chris Pistole was one of several people who began the first stages of a prairie reconstruction around Joplin Fire Station Number 2.
"We've got native grass seed, native wildflower seed. We're going to plant a seed crop of chiropsis, which is a beautiful yellow flower," said Pistole.
"We're throwing them with abandon and hoping they will germinate," said Valerie Frankoski, Center Volunteer.
Pistole says they approached the fire department about the project.
"When we found out about the new fire stations. We thought this would be an opportunity to create an example of what can be done with areas that are normally just planted in lawn grasses," said Pistole.
He says lawns have little benefit to wildlife. Adding these native grasses and wildflowers will improve it.
"You are going to have native plants which will attract native insects, which will attract native birds and it's win-win for everybody," said Pistole.
Eventually, they plan to add a rain garden in the area.
"It certainly is cold out here today, but we're hoping we're planting the seeds for something that will look great in the future," said Pistole.
Project volunteers say the small ecosystem will also cut down on the maintenance and storm water containment costs.
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