Tallgrass Prairie Center


Resources for Landowners and Practitioners



We know Iowa's rural landowners carefully consider land-use options for their property, asking many thoughtful questions. When conservation practices involve removing tillable land from production, those questions take on added significance. Do the benefits of the practice outweigh the costs? Will land productivity be impacted? Will the practice be successful? What kind of management is required and how much time will it take?

Our Prairie on Farms team and Iowa's technical service providers regularly hear variations of these and many other questions about the use of prairie on farms. To help rural landowners and practitioners through the decision-making process, the Tallgrass Prairie Center, the Natural Resources and Conservation Service and our partners at Iowa State STRIPS have collaborated to provide answers to the frequently asked questions.

  • How do prairie STRIPS benefit my farm?
  • Is data available to support these benefits?
  • How are prairie STRIPS positioned to maximize benefits?
  • What cost-share programs are available for STRIPS and other prairie plantings on private land?
  • How do I choose the best seed mix?
  • How do I find a native seeding contractor?
  • Will the deep roots plug tile lines?
  • Will the prairie planting be invaded by weeds?
  • How much time will I need to allocate for maintenance?

Answers to these questions and many more, as well as a variety of additional resources, can be found at the links below.


Landowner Series: A series of brochures to answer landowners' basic questions.

Prairie Benefits           Prairie Establishment     Prairie Maintenance


Prairie benefits for Landowners     Establishment     Maintenance


Publications and Research >>

A link to our peer reviewed journal articles and technical reports.


Prairie Seed Mixes >>

A fact sheet for landowners that covers the basics about native seed mixes.

Prairie Seed Calculator >>

An online tool that allows you to build a custom native seed mix.

Landowner Incentives >>

Resources about incentive programs to help Iowa landowners create and manage native landscapes.

CP-43 >>

USDA fact sheet (December 2019) about CRP funding for prairie strips.


Prairie Strips Technical Note >>

USDA technical note (December 2021) on planning and installing prairie strips.


Cost-Share >>

A compilation of cost-share options for wildlife habitat projects.

Native Seed and Service Providers >>

An up-to-date list of native seed vendors and seeding/management contractors doing business in Iowa.


Farming with Prairie Strips >>

An introductory fact sheet for farmers with commonly asked questions.

The Cost of Prairie Strips >>

A fact sheet explaining estimated establishment and management costs.

Incorporating Prairie into Multi-Functional Landscapes >>

A publication that looks at numerous ways to incorporate prairies into farms.



Iowa State University STRIPS >>

The Iowa State STRIPS program has compiled a FAQ page specifically for prairie strips (Science-Based Trials of Rowcrops Intergrated with Prairie Strips).