Places We Protect

Hoosier Prairie


Hoosier Prairie
Hoosier Prairie Nature Preserve Hoosier Prairie Nature Preserve in Lake County, Indiana, is owned and managed by the Indiana Department of Natural Resources' Division of Nature Preserves. © Christopher Jordan

Hoosier Prairie is one of the few remaining grasslands in the Midwest.



Why You Should Visit

Dedicated as both a State Nature Preserve and a National Natural Landmark in 1977, Hoosier Prairie in Lake County hosts a surprising and stunning array of prairie plants and great ecological diversity amidst the industry of Northwest Indiana. The rolling topography and sandy soils create a variety of habitats that support more than 350 native species of plants, at least 43 of which are uncommon or rarely seen in the state, such as wild white indigo.

What The Nature Conservancy is Doing/Has Done

The Nature Conservancy, along with a coalition of organizations, worked hard to protect the land from 1976 through 2004. Around 2005, additional tracts of land were acquired and transferred to the Department of Natural Resources. The DNR continues stewardship work that will increase the ecological diversity of the preserve. The preserve is owned and managed by the Indiana Division of Nature Preserves and The U.S. National Park Service.

Work done at Hoosier Prairie is in partnership with DNR-Lake Michigan Coastal Program, Indiana Heritage Trust, and North America Wetland Conservation Act.




1,547 acres

Explore our work in this region

What to See: Plants and Animals

Rare habitats such as the dry black oak barrens, wetland pools, and wet prairies are conserved at the Hoosier Prairie, as well as over 350 native plants—43 species being uncommon or rarely seen in Indiana. Plants like the white wild indigo, prairie parsley, Indian paintbrush, and rose pogonia can be spotted among the tall Indian grass. Red-headed woodpeckers, Sedge wrens and eyed brown butterflies can also be observed along the prairie and savanna with unusual reptiles and amphibians supported by the wet prairie "potholes."

The easy terrain and developed trails make for a pleasant hike through the preserve.

For More Information

DNR's Hoosier Prairie Preserve