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Woodland Biome

WOODLAND BIOME - The woodland biome is representative of native forests. It consists of a tree canopy that shades the forest floor and a ground layer consisting of smaller woody and vegetative plants. You are likely to encounter plants such as native sedges and ferns, along with earlier flowering perennials and bulbs that take advantage of the light early in the season before the overstory canopy fills in. The shade that follows through the hotter part of the season provides a great reprieve from the sun for both humans and the animals that inhabit the neighboring space.

Text Supplied by Taylor Beaufore. Beaufore Garden & Landscape.

Additional Information supplied by: Kristen Miller and Linda Luppino, Grosse Ile High School


Definitions & description (shade/sun, wet/dry, etc.)
The woodlands consist of large trees that are spaced out enough to allow sunlight to hit the ground. It is typically dry during the summer months and cool/wet in winter, and remains grassy year-round. There are lots of dense and low plants that live within the environment to allow it to thrive. 

Large trees that are spaced out enough to allow sunlight to hit the ground, grassy, dry during summer and cool/wet during winter. A lot of dense low plants, interspersed with trees.

What types of plants are often found in this biome?
This is primarily oak-elm-ash-cottonwood forest–signifying that these three trees are primarily what’s growing to create the canopy above. Below, some plants such as a white cornflower, wild lupine, culver's root, or aromatic aster could grow.   

What plants have we chosen to use there?
We have tried to stay true to what is actually living and thriving within the woodland biomes on Grosse Ile. Some of these happen to be false indigo, eastern beebalm, downy skullcap, blue wood phlox, swamp milkwood, and beardtongue foxglove. There are countless more, which I implore you to research using an app such as PlantNet or other plant identification service/app. 

Bluebell, False indigo, eastern beebalm, aromatic aster, mountain mint, oak sedge, little bluestem, butterfly milkweed, wild lupine, white cornflower, downy skullcap, beardtongue foxglove, blue wood phlox, wild geranium, culver's root, wild columbine, wild geranium, swamp milkweed.


Where can we find other examples of this biome on Grosse Ile?
  There are a plethora of different spaces on Grosse Ile that have the woodland biome somewhere represented. Such places include the Coleman Preserve, Hickory Island Park, GI National Wildlife Refuge, East of the Bird Sanctuary, Sugar Park, Hickory Island Park, Grosse Ile Woods Preserve, GI Wildlife Sanctuary, and Hennepin Marsh Gateway–to name a few.

  • Open Space

  • Coleman Preserve 

  • GI National Wildlife Refuge 

  • Hickory Island Park

  • Sugar Park

  • Stout Woods

  • East of Bird Sanctuary

  • Parke Lane Open Space

  • Grosse Ile Woods Preserve 

  • GI Wildlife Sanctuary

  • Marion Park

  • Hennepin Marsh Gateway

  • Centennial Woods

  • Krauss Easement North

  • The free space area where the old playground used to be is a good area on the island that could possibly describe a woodland.

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