There are 3,149 different types of plants in the Chicago region. We know that because of wildlife biologists Laura Rericha and Gerould Wilhelm, who have spent years creating a new flora of the Chicago region. It’s called, appropriately: “Flora of the Chicago Region: A Floristic and Ecological Synthesis.”
A flora is a detailed accounting of a region’s plant life. The region they included is made up of 22 counties in Illinois, Wisconsin, Indiana and Michigan. This region is one of the most biodiverse metro areas in the country, according to the authors. One reason for that, they say, is the more than 69,000 acres managed by the Forest Preserve District of Cook County.
Rericha and Wilhelm join us in discussion.