This Perennial Land

Wind

Large areas of wind - and water-erosive soils offer potential reservoirs for biological diversity if planted to prairie or other perennial grasses that can be harvested for bio-fuels. Connected by corridors of perennials that follow the region’s ditches and watercourses, they could act as islands of biodiversity in the larger landscape of corn and soybeans, enabling many kinds of wildlife to move across an otherwise hostile landscape.

Erosion

Erosion-prone slopes (in red) running along Willow Creek and the South Fork of the Watonwan River offer opportunities for narrow buffers of grass or shrubs bordered by rotationally grazed livestock, hazelnuts, grapes, and other marketable perennial crops that can reduce sediment washing into the waterways.

Erosion

Erosion-prone slopes (in red) running along Willow Creek and the South Fork of the Watonwan River offer opportunities for narrow buffers of grass or shrubs bordered by rotationally grazed livestock, hazelnuts, grapes, and other marketable perennial crops that can reduce sediment washing into the waterways.

Chain of Lakes

The Chain of Lakes north of Fairmont is a string of linked lakes and wetlands lying along the bottom of an old tunnel valley – the floor of an ancient river that once flowed under glacial ice. Today this is a narrow corridor of mixes perennial habitats connecting potential wildlife corridor lands to the north with the Elm Creek system to the south, itself a wildlife corridor running to gallery forests bracketed by the Blue Earth River to the east.

Habitat

The lands bordering Creek Lake, a wide portion of Elm Creek, is a nucleus for both publicly and privately owned wild habitat that even today serves as a node of biodiversity along the upper Elm Creek system. Besides offering hunting, hiking, and wildlife watching opportunities, expansion of these wild lands could significantly mitigate water flows and sediment entering Elm Creek, which can get flashy during high rain events. Of course, the more that is mitigated at the Creek’s upper end, the less damage is likely to occur downstream.
  • Wind

    Large areas of wind - and water-erosive soils offer potential reservoirs for biological diversity if planted to prairie or other perennial grasses that can be harvested for bio-fuels. Connected by corridors of perennials that follow the region’s ditches and watercourses, they could act as islands of biodiversity in the larger landscape of corn and soybeans, enabling many kinds of wildlife to move across an otherwise hostile landscape.
  • Erosion

    Erosion-prone slopes (in red) running along Willow Creek and the South Fork of the Watonwan River offer opportunities for narrow buffers of grass or shrubs bordered by rotationally grazed livestock, hazelnuts, grapes, and other marketable perennial crops that can reduce sediment washing into the waterways.
  • Erosion

    Erosion-prone slopes (in red) running along Willow Creek and the South Fork of the Watonwan River offer opportunities for narrow buffers of grass or shrubs bordered by rotationally grazed livestock, hazelnuts, grapes, and other marketable perennial crops that can reduce sediment washing into the waterways.
  • Chain of Lakes

    The Chain of Lakes north of Fairmont is a string of linked lakes and wetlands lying along the bottom of an old tunnel valley – the floor of an ancient river that once flowed under glacial ice. Today this is a narrow corridor of mixes perennial habitats connecting potential wildlife corridor lands to the north with the Elm Creek system to the south, itself a wildlife corridor running to gallery forests bracketed by the Blue Earth River to the east.
  • Habitat

    The lands bordering Creek Lake, a wide portion of Elm Creek, is a nucleus for both publicly and privately owned wild habitat that even today serves as a node of biodiversity along the upper Elm Creek system. Besides offering hunting, hiking, and wildlife watching opportunities, expansion of these wild lands could significantly mitigate water flows and sediment entering Elm Creek, which can get flashy during high rain events. Of course, the more that is mitigated at the Creek’s upper end, the less damage is likely to occur downstream.