Prairie strips are a conservation practice that strategically places native prairie plantings into crops fields with the goal of increasing biodiversity, enhancing water quality, and improving soil health.

The W.K. Kellogg Biological StationLong-Term Ecological Research (LTER) program is collaborating with the Iowa State University Science-Based Trails of Rowcrops Integrated with Prairie Strips (S.T.R.I.P.S.) team to increase the adoption of prairie strips on agricultural landscapes across the Midwest.

Through the development of the MiSTRIPS program, the KBS team will work alongside seven other contributing states to form a regional partnership that delivers programming and networking opportunities to increase the scale and adoption of prairie strips conservation practices on farms.

MiSTRIPS will help expand STIRPS’ efforts within Michigan by connecting agencies, stakeholders, farmers, and farm landowners to technical support, resources, and networking opportunities and through a series of prairie strip field days, publications, and meetings. The creation of MiSTRIPS aligns with broader goals of the KBS LTER by connecting long-term research to on-farm practices.

Partial budget analysis

To help navigate the costs, savings, and payments associated with prairie strips, a collaborative team of scientists, economists, outreach specialists, and Extension educators at Michigan State University has come together to develop a new partial budget tool. The tool predicts that prairie strips could save farmers money if planted in areas where crops yield below 50% of the statewide average. These areas, often field borders, low-lying areas, or cumbersome extensions of fields, may cost more to put into production than to restore to prairie. Additionally, if enrolling in the CRP-43 prairie strip program or other incentive programs, the cost-savings of prairie conversion increase.

For more information on the partial budget, see the full story here.

If you are interested in learning more about the MiSTRIPS project, future MiSTRIPS events, or have questions about prairie strips please contact the program coordinator, Elizabeth Schultheis at