Land Stewardship Activities
The Saint John's Arboretum is dedicated to preserving the native landscape surrounding Saint John's Abbey & University. Explore some of our current and ongoing projects.
Prescribed burns help suppress the growth of trees and invasive species, and they encourage the growth of native prairie plants, birds, mammals, and butterflies. Prairie plants thrive in fires because they have protected root systems up to 15 feet deep. Following a burn, prairie plants burst with new growth and flowers.
Saint John's Arboretum relies heavily on volunteers to help complete prescribed burns in the spring and fall of each year. No experience is necessary, so join our volunteer email list to receive updates about the burning schedule.
Since the early 1940's the Saint John's community has participated in this annual rite of spring. Get an overview of our current maple syrup operation, its history, news, and learn how you can volunteer to help out!
In 2008, Saint John's Arboretum began the restoration of a new 12-acre prairie southwest of West Gemini Lake.
A large number of deer over-winter at Saint John's, and if that influx is added to a high local population, the result is over-browsing of the tree seedlings, shrubs and annual forbs. The goal of the annal deer hunt is to assure a deer population level that will allow both adequate regeneration of the forest and a healthy deer herd on the Abbey lands.