Wilson Prairie


From time to time, hosted Wildflower Walks visit the prairie to explore its unique environment and original undisturbed nature. Watch the Severson Dells Nature Center website and newsletter for announcements of these activities. Because of the few near-virgin sites that exist, the prairie is only open to visits authorized by Don Miller or Zach Grycan, Director of Stewardship. However, those interested in prairies are encouraged to take advantage of the opportunities offered. When doing so, it is advised to wear protective clothing, including pants that can be tucked into socks or tied at the ankles, and to be especially alert for animal holes, which unnoticed could result in sprained ankles.


Because of its unique character as the easternmost known natural location of the Large-Flowered Beard Tongue, a 1992 study was done to track the locations and development of this cluster of plants.

In 2001, Kelly L. Neal included the prairie in a study to determine if there are sex ratio differences in different sized populations of Spiked Lobelia and how this influences seed set.

Other research taking advantage of the prairie's features is welcome as well as authorized. For example, no comprehensive study of the prairie's animal and insect life has been done.


As other prairies are restored, natural sites such as Wilson Prairie offer an excellent opportunity to furnish authentic seeds. Collection has taken place for this purpose, and, to the extent that native populations will not be affected, continues under the supervision of the Director of Stewardship, Zach Grycan, and Restoration Ecologist, Ed Cope.