Did You Know?

The earth makes its own soil, but it takes a VERY long time. In Iowa, it takes 500-1000 years to make one inch of topsoil!

Prairies, Wetlands and Croplands Resources

Iowa's current landscape is predominately cropland.  Fields of corn and soybeans blanket our plains and rolling hills.  This is vastly different, however, from what Iowa looked like prior to western expansion in America, when settlers began making their homes here.  The predominant landscape in Iowa 150 years ago was tall grass prairie dotted with many wetlands.  Trees tended to grow only near bodies of water such as streams, rivers, and lakes.  This landscape is responsible for the rich, organic soils that cover our state, making it favorable for farming still today.

Prairies, Wetlands and Croplands: Keys to the Future Lie in the Past is a program developed for elementary-aged students, emphasizing the importance of integrating prairies, wetlands and croplands together on the landscape.  The PDF booklet, linked below, contains supplemental information and numerous useful website links for parents and educators, as well as a number of enhanced learning activities for students.