Nature's Storytellers

A Blog About Nature in Our DuPage Forest Preserves

Bee Informed About Native Bees

on 9/9/20 1:16 PM By | Keriann Dubina | 0 Comments | Insider Locations Wildlife Conservation Nature native plant
Did you know Illinois is home to more than 500 species of native bees?
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Keep Away! Hogweed, Hemlock and Parsnip

Many plants have amazing adaptations that protect them from being eaten or destroyed by other organisms. That’s good for them but can be bad for people who come in contact with them.
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Attracting Swallowtails to Your Garden

on 7/22/20 1:54 PM By | Abby Dean | 0 Comments | Insider Plants Wildlife Nature native plant Native Plant Sale
Swallowtail butterflies are some of the largest, showiest butterflies found in Illinois. A visit from one in your garden is always a welcome delight.
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Where the Native Wild Things Are

Somewhere, in a relatively small section of Blackwell Forest Preserve nestled along Mack Road, lies a special place where native plants grow.
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The Power of Pollinators

“Nature is to be found in her entirety nowhere more than in her smallest creatures.” ~ Pliny the Elder
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Where the Native Plants Grow

Planting native plants in our yards and gardens is gaining popularity for good reasons.
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Best Native Shrubs for Your Yard

With winter slowly fading and signs of spring arriving daily, gardeners are getting the itch.
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Slow Down on Spring Cleaning in Your Garden

With the recent warm weather and native plants starting to emerge from their winter slumber, folks may be eager to do some spring cleaning in their gardens.
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Be-leaf-ing

Autumn is a time to enjoy the crispness of the weather and the colors of the trees. The yellow, red and orange colors of the oaks, maples and hickories paint a beautiful landscape, making this time of year an experience in art.
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Scientists Search for Clues to Grassland Bird Habitats

More than a dozen ecologists from local conservation agencies toured the 1,800-acre Springbrook Prairie Forest Preserve in Naperville recently to explore and learn more about the high-quality grassland habitat that has been transformed into a birder’s paradise by the Forest Preserve District of DuPage County.
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Lend a Hand at Volunteer Restoration Workdays

Want to give back to nature or earn community service hours? Help Mother Earth by lending a helping hand at our Volunteer Restoration Workdays. They’re a great way to make new friends, get some fresh air and exercise, and give back to nature.
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Restoring More of the Great Prairie

The 358-acre West Chicago Prairie Forest Preserve in West Chicago is one of northeastern Illinois’ premier natural areas, containing more than 600 species of native plants and animals.
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Unexpected Garden Delights

You expect to encounter native plants and wildlife when you visit DuPage forest preserves, but you don’t expect to find amazing gardens abloom in gorgeous flowers.
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Spring Woodland Wildflower Guide

Of all the seasonal blooms, spring wildflowers seem to capture our hearts and attention the most, likely because they’re the first we see after months of drab landscapes. Most grow in woodlands and for that reason are short-lived, or “ephemeral.” They must sprout, grow, flower, fruit and set seeds before the trees leaf out and block the sun. Some spring flowers are a memory by summer, but a few produce leaves that last into autumn. Below are a few you’ll see this season, so enjoy them while they last!
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Contain Your Love of Gardening

on 4/2/19 3:25 PM By | Dave Andrusyk | 0 Comments | Insider Plants Nature native plant Native Plant Sale
I know many folks who are interested in growing native plants but feel they can’t because they don’t have a yard or room in their yard to grow them. 
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Keep Kids Learning with Fun Summer Day Camps

Help your child unplug from video games and connect to nature with our fun outdoor day camps for kids and teens. 
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Points to Ponder Before Raising Monarch Caterpillars

on 3/20/19 11:50 AM By | Andres Ortega | 0 Comments | Insider Plants Wildlife Conservation Nature native plant
Full disclosure: I’ve always liked insects. As a child I found them intensely interesting and spent hours just watching them walk, feed and fly. As an adult I came to realize their critical importance to our natural habitats (not to mention our food supply). 
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Early Spring Plant Arrivals

Just a few native woodland wildflowers emerge in March: Bloodroot (Sanguinaria canadensis) and sharp-lobed hepatica (Hepatica acutiloba) are among them.
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Let's Go Native

We all have different sources of inspiration. Sometimes you just have to like something a little before you’ll try it. Other times you have to kick the tires and thoroughly research the matter before you dive in. So it is with gardening. 
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The Tangled Relationships in a Garden

The relationship between milkweed and monarchs is well known and well documented. Monarch butterflies feed on the nectar in milkweed flowers, collecting pollen before transferring that pollen to another plant. Female monarchs also lay their eggs one at a time on the leaves of milkweed plants. When the eggs hatch, the larva are dependent on the milkweed for food.
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