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Native Plants and Wildlife Gardens

The semi weekly blog spot is an amazing resource for those of you who want to read about landscaping with natives and why it is so beneficial to our indigenous wildlife.  Articles are posted from all over the country, and many from the Midwest, so a lot of great regional information is a click away.


Chautauqua Bottoms

Green Earth's Chautauqua Bottoms is located on the north side of Chautauqua Road, between Emerald Lane and Tower Road.  Historically this area was bottomland hardwood forest.  The soils at this site are representative of wetlands, and indeed, the grounds are wet throughout the rainy season. This site possesses tall grass prairie, upland forest, bottomland hardwood, and a bottomland hardwood restoration area planted in 2005.

This 37 acre preserve has three trail heads: the first is located off of a well-marked parking area off of Chautauqua Road, the second is located at the western terminus of Freeman Street, and the third is located just west of the Flagland site off of Sunset Road (along the east edge of the Carbondale Park District Soccer Fields).  The intensity level of each of the trails is light, unless one wishes to cross Little Crab Orchard Creek to successfully loop the trail system. The creek crossing is very steep and should only be attempted when the creek level is low.

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The Maurice Webb Trail (named after former Green Earth Board Member and President, M. Webb) meanders through a tall grass prairie, a riparian woodland, and the reforestation area, looping back to the trail head and parking area off of Chautauqua Road.  The trail is approximately 1.3 miles in length and forks to intersect with the Woodland Spur Trail to the north.  

Trail Adopters:  Ken Mayberry

The Woodland Spur can be accessed from the Freeman Street trail head and trends northwest through an upland woodland.  The trail passes a seasonal pond that is inundated throughout the rainy season.  The .75 mi trail can either end at Little Crab Orchard Creek and be retraced back to the Freeman Street trail head, or continue on to cross Little Crab Orchard Creek to connect to the David Kenney Trail.  The creek crossing is very step and should be only be considered by those willing to get their feet wet.

Trail Adopters: Janel and Bob Taylor

The David Kenney Trail (named for current Green Earth Board Member, former Green Earth President, and former Director of the Illinois Department of Conservation, D. Kenney) travels along the west bank of Little Crab Orchard Creek from Chautauqua Road to Sunset Road.  The trail is approximately 1.0 mile in length and provides beautiful views of the creek and its cliff banks.  The trail may be accessed from the south through a new trail head located off Chautauqua Road or from the north by a trail head located west of our Flaglands site off of Sunset, through the Park District Soccer Fields.  Green Earth asks that no one park along the private drive off of Chautauqua Road (formerly designated as parking). 

Trail Adopters:  Jan Weiss and Dorcy Prosser 


Brush Hill       Oakland        Chautauqua Bottoms         Fernlands         Flaglands         Pyles Fork

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