Can you name something that absorbs rainfall like a sponge then filters and stores the water while preventing soil erosion and fertilizer run-off into streams and rivers? In a new video, the Missouri Prairie Foundation reveals how native prairie plants can protect soil, improve water quality, and address other environmental problems.

Through breathtaking images and insightful expert interviews, the short video demonstrates the bountiful ecological, wildlife, and economic benefits native prairie provides, including:

•    Native plants are cost-effective tools for containing water run-off to alleviate flooding pressures and reduce soil erosion.
•    In recognition of the many benefits of native plants, there is a real movement toward the use of native plants in residential and commercial landscaping, driven by interest in sustainable building project initiatives

The Missouri Prairie Foundation video makes the case that realizing these and many other environmental benefits requires restoring more land with native plants and conserving the remaining 90,000 acres of original native prairie in the state.

“Like so many things in life, we are beginning to realize the benefit of the prairies now that they’re nearly all gone,” Dr. Peter Raven, President Emeritus of the Missouri Botanical Garden, said in the video. “They are disappearing very rapidly. And that really changes the whole natural balance of the whole Northern hemisphere.”

The video is offered as a resource for media and interested groups to explore in greater depth the benefits of prairie and other native plants. To learn more about the Missouri Prairie Foundation and its events and activities, visit www.moprairie.org.