After planning for over a year, the new prairie restoration on six acres of St. Croix Prep land was seeded this past Friday. “We were a bit concerned about the wind factor but the students did an amazing job seeding below their knees and making sure the seeds made contact with the ground instead of blowing away,” stated Kristin Hall. Hall is a Conservation Manager with Audubon Minnesota and an SCPA parent.
Over 50 volunteers from several groups including St. Croix Prep families, Pheasants Forever, Washington Conservation District, Emmons & Olivier Resources, Inc., Middle St. Croix Watershed Management Organization and the Audubon Minnesota assisted over 1,100 student with seeding the area. Students were provided a bucket of seed mix that included native flowers and grasses. Students then proceeded to a designated seeding area to cast their bucket of seeds and stomp them into the ground. Dr. Schreyer, an Upper School teacher, joked “it felt like it ran quite smoothly = organized chaos.”
“The conservation committee is very pleased with the seed coverage accomplished by both the students and the professionals. Minnesota Native Landscapes will also be adding seed plugs to the entire planting area on Monday, October 31, so overall we should achieve great coverage. The key going forward will be to support the new seeds. The committee will continue to work together to accomplish that,” added Camilla Correll. Correll is a Water Resource Engineer and SCPA parent.
“The SCPA community owes a huge debt of gratitude to Camilla and Kristin for bringing this opportunity to St. Croix Prep,” expressed Kelly Gutierrez, chief financial officer and conservation committee member. She went on to say, “I’m looking forward to the native prairie becoming established. It will serve as an outdoor classroom that will provide limitless learning opportunities for our student. The benefits of this effort will be felt for generations. I am delighted at the thought of our students driving past this fully established prairie in 60 years and telling their grandchildren that they and their classmates planted the restored prairie in 2016.”
To accomplish this project, Correll and Hall secured grants from Pheasants Forever, Audubon Society and Middle St. Croix Watershed District to fund this project. They then spearheaded the St. Croix Prep Conservation Committee, a group comprised of St. Croix Prep staff, parents and students, to coordinate this community wide project.