Agronomy and Horticulture Department


Date of this Version



Published in Ecological Monographs, Vol. 14, No. 4 (Oct., 1944), pp. 393-479. Copyright 1944: Ecological Society of America. Used by permission.


For eight years drought had prevailed in the mid- continental grasslands. The true prairie west of Minnesota, Iowa, and Missouri had been woefully depleted. Mixed prairie farther westward to the Rocky Mountains had been nearly or entirely destroyed. But now the parched soil was wet once more, wet to a depth of several feet. The hot dry air was now warm and moist. The terrible dust storms had ceased. A changed environment had come at last, for this was the end of the long period of drought. Thus, in 1941 the long delayed recovery of vegetation began. The nature of this complex phenomenon was now to be revealed and the sequence of recovery to be recorded.