A new greenhouse on the campus of the National Mississippi River Museum & Aquarium is reinforcing the organization’s commitment to conservation and its strong partnerships with other local, regional, and national conservation organizations. Made possible through the generous support of the Charlie & Vicki Glab family, B & B Erectors, and the Dubuque County Conservation Board, the greenhouse will play a major role in the River Museum’s work with pollinator conservation.
Protecting and stewarding rivers begins with protecting and stewarding the land. Eighty-three percent of the land in the United States, and 97 percent of land in Iowa, is privately owned. Healthy management of yards, green spaces, fields, and timber builds connectivity between native plant species, improves soil health, and increases biodiversity.
“We can make a massive difference on land-based wildlife habitats through proper land stewardship,” says Curator of Conservation Programs Jared McGovern. “This translates to healthier habitats in our rivers and streams.”
Within the greenhouse itself, the River Museum will head start pollinator friendly, native plant species for distribution by the Dubuque County Conservation Board’s Mowing to Monarchs program. The space will be used to educate school-age youth and River Museum visitors on the principles of healthy land stewardship and their impacts on pollinators such as Monarch Butterflies.
“The City of Dubuque, Iowa State University Extension & Outreach, the University of Northern Iowa’s Good Neighbor Iowa Program, and Blank Park Zoo’s Plant Grow Fly Program are all active partners working toward the common goal of land stewardship and biodiversity,” McGovern states. “Promoting native landscaping in urban, suburban, and rural areas for increased pollinator habitat increases biodiversity and engages the community directly in species recovery efforts in the Upper Mississippi River Watershed.”
The Charlie & Vicki Glab Family Greenhouse will debut to the general public at the River Museum’s Party for the Planet event April 24, 2021. For more information on the organization’s conservation efforts, visit rivermuseum.com/take-caare or call Jared McGovern, Curator of Conservation Programs, at 563-557-9545 x215.