Illinois Natural History Survey - University of Illinois

List of plant species at 
Revis Hill Prairie Nature Preserve, 
Mason County, Illinois.

Kenneth R. Robertson

The following notes are by William E. McClain, Illinois Department of Natural Resources.

Revis Nature Preserve is located on the north valley wall of the Sangamon River approximately 240 feet above its mile wide floodplain. Gently rolling hills, which are dune-like in nature due to the deposition of loess and sand, characterize the topography of the uplands. The principal plant communities of the preserve are loess hill prairie, mesic prairie, dry-mesic upland forest, and mesic upland forest.

Loess hill prairie is the principal plant community present in the preserve. The maximum height of the vegetation in this community is approximately two feet and the predominant plants are little bluestem, slender scurfpea, blue-eyed grass, sand phlox, goldenrod, and stiff aster. Other common grasses include side-oats grama and Indian grass. Other associated plants are horsetail, puccoon, leadplant, purple prairie clover, silky aster, and obedient plant.

Mesic prairie exists in a few locations below the bluffs present within the preserve. These are probably remnants of a much larger mesic prairie that occupied the lower bluffs and portions of the floodplain during presettlement time. The larger prairie grasses, big bluestem and Indian grass are more abundant here than in the loess hill prairie. Other plants that appear to be restricted to this community are prairie cinquefoil, white prairie clover, Culver's root, and mountain mint.

Dry-mesic upland forest occupies the back slopes of the bluffs and most of the relatively level portions of the forested uplands. The predominant trees in this forest type are white oak, black oak, and shagbark hickory while mockernut hickory and chinquapin oak are common associates. Blackjack oak is present along the top of the bluffs in the prairie-forest boarder. A nearby continuous understory contains small-stemmed individuals of the canopy species plus black cherry, American elm, red elm, and occasional plants of red mulberry. Individuals of raspberry, poison ivy, and gooseberry are scattered throughout the shrub layer. Characteristic plants of the herbaceous layer are lopseed, sick-tights, and fescue grass.

Mesic upland forest occupies the ravines in the lower reaches of the preserve. The predominant plant of the community is bur oak. Associated tree species include American ash, black walnut, and shagbark hickory. Open-grown individuals of chinquapin oak are present near the forest-prairie border. Individuals of the canopy species plus redbud, red mulberry, red elm, and hawthorn form a discontinuous understory. Individuals of raspberry and gooseberry are scattered. A diverse herbaceous flora, including bluebells, larkspur, trillium, Dutchman's breeches, fragile fern, maidenhair fern, and baneberry, characterize the least disturbed ravines.

This list was compiled primarily from three sources: (1) a species list compiled by Robert A. Evers and published in his "Hill Prairies of Illinois," Bulletin of the Illinois Natural History Survey Volume 26, Article 5, 1955; (2) an unpublished species list of John Schwegman, Illinois Department of Natural Resources, based on field work in 1978 and 1979; and (3) personal observations made by Ken Robertson between 1987 and 1996.

This list only includes species that occur in prairie habitats at Revis. Most of the prairie habitat is loess hill prairie, but gravel hill prairie, mesic prairie, and sand prairie also occur here. Above the slopes of the prairies are extensive areas of upland forest, and species that only occur in the forest are not included in this species list. The few woody plants that ARE on this list are those that invade the prairie habitats.


Scientific name Common name Plant family
Ambrosia psilostachya Western ragweed Asteraceae
Amorpha canescens Lead plant Fabaceae
Andropogon gerardii Big bluestem Poaceae
Andropogon scoparius Little bluestem Poaceae
Anemone caroliniana Carolina anemone Ranunculaceae
Anemone cylindrica Thimbleweed Ranunculaceae
Antennaria neglecta Prairie pussytoes Asteraceae
Artemisia campestris Beach wormwood Asteraceae
Aruncus dioicus Goat's-beard Rosaceae
Asclepias amplexicaulis Clasping milkweed Asclepiadaceae
Asclepias verticillata Horsetail milkweed Asclepiadaceae
Asclepias viridiflora Green milkweed Asclepiadaceae
Aster azureus Sky-blue aster Asteraceae
Aster ericoides Heath aster Asteraceae
Aster linariifolius Flax-leaved aster Asteraceae
Aster oblongifolius Aromatic aster Asteraceae
Aster pilosus Downy aster Asteraceae
Aster sericeus Silky aster Asteraceae
Astragalus canadensis Canadian milk vetch Fabaceae
Belamcanda chinensis Blackberry lily Iridaceae
Bouteloua curtipendula Sideoats grama Poaceae
Bouteloua hirsuta Hairy grama Poaceae
Campsis radicans Trumpet creeper Bignoniaceae
Carex filiculmis Sedge Cyperaceae
Carex meadii sedge Cyperaceae
Carex muhlenbergii sedge Cyperaceae
Carex pensylvanica sedge Cyperaceae
Carex umbellata Sedge Cyperaceae
Carya tomentosa Mockernut hickory Juglandaceae
Cassia fasciculata Partridge pea Fabaceae
Celastrus scandens Bittersweet Celastraceae
Chamaesyce maculata Nodding spurge Euphorbiaceae
Cirsium hillii Hill's thistle Asteraceae
Comandra umbellata Bastard toadflax Santalaceae
Coreopsis lanceolata Tickseed coreopsis Asteraceae
Coreopsis palmata Prairie coreopsis Asteraceae
Coreopsis tripteris Tall tickseed Asteraceae
Cornus drummondii Rough-leaved dogwood Cornaceae
Crataegus mollis Red haw Rosaceae
Cyperus filiculmis Umbrella sedge Cyperaceae
Daucus carota Queen Anne's lace Apiaceae
Desmodium illinoense Illinois tick trefoil Fabaceae
Desmodium sessilifolium Sessile-leaved tick trefoil Fabaceae
Dodecatheon media Shooting star Primulaceae
Draba reptans Whitlow grass Brassicaceae
Echinacea pallida Pale coneflower Asteraceae
Elymus canadensis Nodding wild rye Poaceae
Equisetum laevigatum Smooth scouring rush Equisetaceae
Eragrostis spectabilis Tumble-grass Poaceae
Erigeron annuus Daisy fleabane Asteraceae
Erigeron strigosus Daisy fleabane Asteraceae
Eryngium yuccifolium Rattlesnake master Apiaceae
Eupatorium altissimum Tall boneset Asteraceae
Euphorbia corollata Flowering spurge Euphorbiaceae
Fragaria virginiana Wild strawberry Rosaceae
Fraxinus americana White ash Oleaceae
Galium pilosum Bedstraw Rubiaceae
Gaura biennis Butterfly-weed Onagraceae
Gentiana quinquefolia Stiff gentian Gentianaceae
Gerardia aspera Rough false foxglove Scrophulariaceae
Gnaphalium obtusifolium Sweet everlasting Asteraceae
Hedeoma hispida Rough pennyroyal Lamiaceae
Helianthus occidentalis Western sunflower Asteraceae
Helianthus rigidus Prairie sunflower Asteraceae
Heliopsis helianthoides False sunflower Asteraceae
Heterotheca villosa Golden aster Asteraceae
Heuchera richardsonii Alum root Saxifragaceae
Hieracium longipilum Hairy hawkweed Asteraceae
Hypericum punctatum Spotted St. John's wort Hypericaceae
Hypericum sphaerocarpum Round-fruited St. John's wort Hypericaceae
Juniperus virginiana Eastern redcedar Cypressaceae
Koeleria macrantha Junegrass Poaceae
Kuhnia eupatorioides False boneset Asteraceae
Lactuca canadensis Wild lettuce Asteraceae
Leptoloma cognatum Fall witch grass Poaceae
Lespedeza capitata Bush clover Fabaceae
Liatris aspera Rough blazing-star Asteraceae
Liatris cylindracea Blazing-star Asteraceae
Linum sulcatum Wild flax Linaceae
Lithospermum canescens Hoary puccoon Boraginaceae
Lithospermum carolinense Sand puccoon Boraginaceae
Lithospermum incisum Yellow puccoon Boraginaceae
Lobelia spicata Spiked lobelia Campanulaceae
Lysimachia quadrifolia Loosestrife Onagraceae
Malus ioensis Iowa crabapple Rosaceae
Medicago lupulina Black medic Fabaceae
Melilotus alba White sweet clover Fabaceae
Melilotus officinalis Yellow sweet clover Fabaceae
Microserias cuspidata Prairie dandelion Asteraceae
Monarda fistulosa Wild bergamot Lamiaceae
Muhlenbergia schreberi Nimble will Poaceae
Oenothera biennis Evening primrose Onagraceae
Onosmodium occidentale Marbleseed Boraginaceae
Orobanche fasciculata Clustered broomrape Orobanchaceae
Oxalis violacea Purple wood sorrel Oxalidaceae
Panicum capillare Witch grass Poaceae
Panicum linearifolium Panic grass Poaceae
Panicum oligosanthes Panic grass Poaceae
Panicum villosissimum Panic grass Poaceae
Paspalum ciliatifolium Bead grass Poaceae
Parthenocissus quinquefolia Virginia creeper Vitaceae
Pedicularis canadensis Lousewort Scrophulariaceae
Penstemon pallidus Pale beardstongue Scrophulariaceae
Petalostemum candidum White prairie clover Fabaceae
Petalostemum purpureum Purple prairie clover Fabaceae
Phlox bifida Cleft phlox Polemoniaceae
Physostegia virginianum False dragonhead Lamiaceae
Plantago patagonica Salt-and-pepper plant Plantaginaceae
Poa pratensis Blue grass Poaceae
Poinsettia dentata Wild poinsettia Euphorbiaceae
Polanisia dodecandra Clammyweed Capparidaceae
Polygala verticillata Whorled milkwort Polygalaceae
Polytaenia nuttallii Prairie parsley Apiaceae
Potentilla arguta Prairie cinquefoil Rosaceae
Potentilla simplex Cinquefoil Rosaceae
Prenanthes aspera Rough white lettuce Asteraceae
Prunella vulgaris Self-heal Lamiaceae
Psoralea tenuiflora Scurf-pea Fabaceae
Pycnanthemum pilosum Mountain mint Lamiaceae
Quercus alba White oak Fagaceae
Quercus marilandica Blackjack oak Fagaceae
Quercus macrocarpa Burr oak Fagaceae
Quercus velutina Black oak Fagaceae
Ratibida pinnata Yellow coneflower Asteraceae
Rhus glabra Smooth sumac Anacardiaceae
Robinia pseudoacacia Black locust Fabaceae
Rosa carolina Pasture rose Rosaceae
Rosa suffulta Sunshine rose Rosaceae
Rubus flagellaris Dewberry Rosaceae
Rubus occidentalis Blackberry Rosaceae
Rudbeckia hirta Black-eyed Susan Asteraceae
Ruellia humilis Wild petunia Acanthaceae
Salix humilis Prairie willow Salicaceae
Senecio plattensis Prairie groundsel Asteraceae
Silphium integrifolium Rosinweed Asteraceae
Silphium laciniatum Compass plant Asteraceae
Sisyrinchium albidum Pale blue-eye grass Iridaceae
Sisyrinchium campestre Blue-eyed grass Iridaceae
Solidago speciosa Showy goldendrod Asteraceae
Solidago canadensis Tall goldenrod Asteraceae
Solidago nemoralis Field goldenrod Asteraceae
Solidago ptarmicoides Stiff aster Asteraceae
Solidago rigida Rigid goldenrod Asteraceae
Solidago ulmifolia Elm-leaved goldenrod Asteraceae
Sorghastrum nutans Indian grass Poaceae
Sporobolus asper Dropseed Poaceae
Sporobolus clandestinus Sand dropseed Poaceae
Sporobolus heterolepis Prairie dropseed Poaceae
Spiranthes magnicamporum Scented lady's tresses Orchidaceae
Sporobolus cryptandrus Sand dropseed Poaceae
Sporobolus vaginiflorus Poverty grass Poaceae
Stipa spartea Needle grass Poaceae
Taraxacum officinale Dandelion Asteraceae
Teucrium canadense American Germander Lamiaceae
Tragopogon dubius Goat's beard Asteraceae
Trichostema brachiatum False pennyroyal Lamiaceae
Tridens flavus Purple-top Poaceae
Triosteum perfoliatum Late horse gentian Caprifoliaceae
Verbena stricta Hoary vervain Verbenaceae
Ulmus americana American elm Ulmaceae
Vernonia missurica Missouri ironweed Asteraceae
Veronicastrum virginicum Culver's root Scrophulariaceae
Viola pedatifida Prairie violet Violaceae
Vitis riparia Riverbank grape Vitaceae


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