Agronomy and Horticulture Department


Date of this Version



Published in Ecology, Vol. 15, No. 4 (Oct., 1934), pp. 333-347. Copyright 1934 Ecological Society of America. Used by permission.


Continued study of the great midcontinental grasslands of North America throughout a period of years has impressed the writers with the high degree of stability of the climax prairie. This phenomenon has been carefully considered in a study of the types of prairie in the Missouri Valley over an area of several thousand square miles centering in eastern Nebraska but including five neighboring states. Present studies on the deterioration of the prairie under the impact of grazing, and changes in edaphic and atmospheric environment with the breaking and cropping of the land have further emphasized the stabilizing influence of a cover of grassland.