Spinn Prairie
Spinn Prairie in White County Spinn Prairie in White County © Christopher Jordan

Places We Protect

Spinn Prairie

Indiana

Amidst a sea of corn and soybeans, Spinn Prairie is a reminder of Indiana's original landscape.

Why You Should Visit 

Dedicated as a State Nature Preserve in 1988 Spinn Prairie in White County is a reminder of Indiana's endangered prairie communities. This small prairie exemplifies how resilient nature can be by adapting back to its natural landscape after being used for agriculture. The natural communities found here include oak savanna, open mesic and wet prairie, willow shrub thickets and pin oak flatwoods, featuring species such as blazing star wildflowers and the wild white indigo.

What The Nature Conservancy is Doing/has Done

Stewardship workdays are frequent and focus on seed collecting and invasive species removal. The Conservancy is also actively working on reversing the impacts made by man and prescribing burns to facilitate the natural disturbance the prairie depends on.

This work is done in partnership with Indianapolis Power & Light Company.

What to See: Plants and Animals

Acres of six-foot-tall bluestem grass makes room for colorful prairie plants on the drier upland area. White wild indigo, woodland sunflower, sweet coneflower, blazing star, and rattlesnake master are just a few examples. A closer inspection of the vegetation will yield the ragged-fringed orchid, small green or tubercled orchid, nodding ladies' tresses and gentians. A variety of butterflies also make their home at the prairie. Look for the Black Dash, Black Swallowtail, Acadian Hairstreak, Eastern-tailed blue, Viceroy, and Monarch. Bird species include Sora Rails, Summer Tanagers, Little Blue Herons and Red-headed Woodpeckers.

Although there is no trail, the accessible terrain and modest size of the preserve makes self-guided tours easy.