By BECKY WILDT
Capital News Service
LANSING — In flower pots or 100-acre lots, native prairie plants are increasingly important to butterflies and wildlife because in the wild, the plants are threatened by invasive species and human development. Only .01 percent of native prairie has been left unaltered in Michigan, according to Jennifer Howell, stewardship manager at Pierce Cedar Creek Institute, a nature center near Hastings. The rest has been developed or turned into farmland. But now planting prairies is increasingly popular. “The institute is a hands-on destination for schools and other visitors to learn about prairies,” Howell said.