McCully Heritage Project
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The McCully Heritage Project is committed to being good stewards of the land.  With 940 acres, we are striving to protect the environment, while maintaining a sustainable enterprise.  The MHP property is open and free to the public for their enjoyment and for environmental education activities; we are also a working farm, with agricultural and forested land.  MHP hosts a variety of programs aimed toward educating fellow landowners about sustainable practices.

The wetland at the McCully Heritage Project provides an example of a successful wetland reconstruction.  The wetland was built with funding from the IDNR C2000 grant program.  The wetland area provides a buffer between the agricultural fields in the MHP bottomlands and Crawford Creek.  Currently MHP is developing a land management plan to more effectively manage the wetland area, improving habitat for wildlife and controlling exotic, invasive plant species.  Click here for more about the MHP Wetland.

Invasive v. Native
Exotic, invasive species are a hot topic these days in many circles.  Species such as bush honeysuckle, autumn olive and tree-of-heaven (to name a few) are taking over many areas of the landscape, crowding out native plants, and hindering sustainable ecological development.  Exotic, invasive species are species (in this case plants) that are not native to the area (generally were introduced from Asia or Europe) and that tend to thrive and take over in certain environments.

The MHP is currently working toward controlling invasive species on the property and developing plans to educate fellow landowners and help them to learn about these plants and learn how to control these invaders on their property.  By controlling the invasive species we are improving the quality of our land and timber, while also improving the environment.

As a complement to removal of exotic invasives, the MHP is planting native plants whenever possible to replace the invasive plants.  At one time landowners were encouraged, by the DNR and other agencies, to plant these species to promote wildlife habitat. Birds and other animals do love them, but unfortunately the plants take over and do more harm than good.  In order to mitigate the effect on the wildlife of removing invasive plants, MHP is attempting to establish native plants in their place.

New garden plantings at the MHP will also use native plants, many grown from seed harvested from the MHP Hill Prairie plot.  Plans for the grounds at MHP include a number of bird and butterfly gardens using native plants.  These gardens will not only provide valuable food for the birds and butterflies, but will serve as examples to visitors of how beautiful (and sustainable) native plant gardens can be.

hickory tree

Summer 2007: MHP hosted a summer intern, sponsored by the Nat'l Great Rivers Research and Education Center. The internship addressed invasive plants on the MHP property and established a guide for how to manage these troublesome species.

Find out more here...

Winter 2006: In the winter of 2006, MHP completed a forestry stewardship plan. This plan outlines a strategy for sustainable timber harvests and timber stand improvements over the next 20 years.

Do horses spread non-native plants on trails?

Find out here.

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