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Paperback $50.00 ISBN: 9781597260343 Published July 2005


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The Tallgrass Restoration Handbook

For Prairies, Savannas, and Woodlands

The Tallgrass Restoration Handbook
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Edited by Stephen Packard and Cornelia F. Mutel

504 pages | 6 x 9

Prairies are among the most severely degraded ecosystems on the North American continent, with virtually no original prairie land extant in a pristine state. Because of the amount and severity of environmental damage visited upon them, prairies have become a proving ground for the fledgling craft of ecological restoration.

The restoration of ecosystems is a practical science, with little theoretical knowledge available to guide the work of practitioners. Information is acquired primarily through an arduous process of trial and error, and the need for sharing information is immense. The Tallgrass Restoration Handbook is thus an essential contribution to the literature.

The book is a hands-on manual that provides a detailed account of what has been learned about the art and science of prairie restoration and the application of that knowledge to restoration projects throughout the world. Chapters provide guidance on all aspects of the restoration process, from conceptualization and planning, to execution and monitoring. Chapters cover:

  • conserving biodiversity
  • restoring populations of rare plants
  • plowing and seeding
  • obtaining and processing seeds
  • conducting burns
  • controlling invasive plants
  • animal populations
  • monitoring vegetation and more
Other resources include a key to restoration options that provides detailed instructions for specific types of projects and a comprehensive glossary of restoration terms. Appendixes present hard-to-find data on plants and animals of the prairies, seed collection dates, propagation methods, sources of seeds and equipment, and more.

The Tallgrass Restoration Handbook is a state-of-the-art compendium that can serve a vital role as a sort of "parts catalog and repair manual" for the tallgrass prairies and oak openings of the Midwest. Written by those whose primary work is actually the making of prairies, it explores a myriad of restoration philosophies and techniques and is an essential resource for anyone working to nurture our once-vibrant native landscapes to a state of health.

"Not only is the book of great value to those directly involved in restoration ...but also to those interested in the ecology of natural communities and to those charged with educating the public about conservation....[A] useful resource and a worthwhile investment to anyone engaged in the many facets of tallgrass restoration."
Restoration Ecology

List of Illustrations
List of Tables
Foreword by William R. Jordan III
Preface to the 2005 Edition by Cornelia F. Mutel and Stephen Packard
Perspective by Stephen Packard and Cornelia F. Mutel 
PART I. Introduction
Chapter 1. Orchards of Oak and a Sea of Grass \ Virginia M. Kline
Chapter 2. Prairie Underground \ R. Michael Miller
PART II. Goals and Plans
Chapter 3. Planning a Restoration \ Virginia M. Kline
Chapter 4. Restoration Options \ Stephen Packard
Chapter 5. Restoring Remnants \ Stephen Packard and Laurel M. Ross
Chapter 6. Restoring Populations of Rare Plants \ James A. Reinartz
PART III. Seeds and Planting
Chapter 7. Obtaining and Processing Seeds \ Steven I. Apfelbaum, Brian J. Bader, Fred Faessler, David Mahler
Chapter 8. Tips for Gathering Individual Species \ Richard R. Clinebell II
Chapter 9. Designing Seed Mixes \ Neil Diboll
Chapter 10. Seed Treatment and Propagation Methods \ James F. Steffen
Chapter 11. Interseeding \ Stephen Packard
Chapter 12. Plowing and Seeding \ John P. Morgan
Chapter 13. Hand-Planted Prairies \ Peter Schramm
PART IV. Management and Monitoring
Chapter 14. Conducting Burns \ Wayne R. Pauly
Chapter 15. Summer Fires \ Roger C. Anderson
Chapter 16. Controlling Invasive Plants \ Mary Kay Solecki
Chapter 17. Monitoring Vegetation \ Linda A. Masters
PART V. Protecting, Restoring, and Monitoring Animals
Chapter 18. Insects \ Douglas J. Taron
Chapter 19. Amphibians and Reptiles \ Kenneth S. Mierzwa
Chapter 20. Birds \ Victoria J. Byre
Chapter 21. Bison \ Allen A. Steuter
A. Vascular Plants of Midwestern Tallgrass Prairies \ Douglas Ladd
B. Terrestrial Vertebrates of Tallgrass Prairies \ Stanley A. Temple
C. Cross-References for Plant Names
D. Publications on Natural Communities of the Tallgrass Region
E. Sources of Seeds and Equipment
F. Restoration Contacts
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