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Growing prairie plants to be the topic on Jan. 16

The common milkweed plant produces seeds in the fall.
The common milkweed plant produces seeds in the fall.

The Jan. 16 meeting of the Wild Ones will include a program on growing prairie plants.

Peggy and Bryan Redington of Rochelle will present: “How to Grow Prairie Plants from Seeds, Roots, and Cuttings” at Rock Valley College’s Physical Education Center at 3301 N. Mulford Road in Rockford, on Thursday, Jan. 16, at 7 p.m.

Since 2017, the Redingtons have owned and operated Country Road Greenhouses (CRG), a native plant nursery with 11 greenhouses on 6 acres near Rochelle, and two acres of prairie which are currently being expanded to allow for more seed collection.

The focus at CRG is to provide native prairie plants, grasses, sedges, and rushes to forest preserve districts, park districts, natural landscapers, native restoration projects, and groups that promote the use of native plants (including the local chapter of Wild Ones).

The Redingtons grow all of their plants from seed or cuttings which are collected on the property and they are currently working on providing a source of native trees and shrubs.

They are always looking for more ways to support and promote native plants, pollinators, and wildlife in the region. They maintain a hive of over 10,000 honeybees.

Peggy will describe the basics of growing prairie plants from seeds, roots, and cuttings, and creating a vernalization period by sowing seeds and storing them in a cooler for the winter.

She is a graduate of Kishwaukee College with an AAS Horticulture degree in greenhouse management, with certificates in greenhouse production and garden center management.

She has 20-plus years in the horticulture industry, attaining positions in greenhouse management, nursery management, display gardens, landscape design and cannabis production.

She was formerly the greenhouse manager of the Kishwaukee College horticulture program, where her emphasis was to support the instruction of all the horticulture program students, while also creating, maintaining, and beautifying the campus display gardens.

This program is free and open to the public. For more information, call 779-537.8939.

Wild Ones is a non-profit educational organization that promotes the use of native plants and natural landscaping to preserve natural diversity. For more information about the Rock River Valley chapter, visit www.wildonesrrvc.org.