Northbrook Park District and the Village of Northbrook are conducting prescribed burns of native landscapes in your area, weather permitting. This project is supported by generous funding from ComEd and Openlands and educational programming on this process is coming soon.

The Village and Park District practice ecological prescribed burns as a natural maintenance system. Burning only a section of prairie or natural area each year allows refuge for wildlife habitat. Prescribed burning is a major tool for preserving biological diversity. Planned burns can decrease competition from weeds, reduce the buildup of vegetative fuel, increase plant vigor and support a balance of minerals within the soil.

Burn Dates – April through May 2021

Wednesday, April 14 — Prescribed prairie burn at Heritage Oaks Golf Club (formerly Sportsman’s Country Club) Click to view map.

Burn Locations

This page will be updated with the days and locations of Park District burns as they are planned and occur. For more information on prescribed burns at Village locations, visit their website.

2021 locations include:

  • Heritage Oaks Golf Club (formerly Sportsman’s Country Club, Park District-owned): All of the native areas on the course
  • Techny Prairie Park and Fields (Park District-owned): The native areas located predominately on the north and east sides
  • Wood Oaks Green Park (Park District-owned): The sledding hill and the native areas on the western side
  • “Old Northbrook East Basin” (Village-owned): The northernmost detention basin at Northbrook East, located north of the intersection
    of Midway and Sunset Ridge
  • “Techny Basin/Old 319 Property” (Village-owned): The basin and native areas west of Glenbrook North High School

Why are properties with native landscaping burned?

Burning is done on properties with native landscaping to help support the healthy growth of the landscape. Many native Midwestern plants evolved on the prairie where fires would naturally occur. As a result, these native species are by nature resistant to fire and their seeds require the heat from the burns to germinate. Additionally, these burns help remove invasive plant species which did not evolve to withstand the fire while also breaking down old decaying plant matter to add nutrients to the soil. All of this in turn helps support pollinator species which depend on native plants for food and shelter.

Do I need to take any action during the prescribed burns?

No. Prescribed burns are conducted by licensed environmental restoration professionals. These fires are low-intensity and continuously monitored to ensure that the burn is progressing safely. There will be some smoke, and those who are sensitive to it may wish to close their windows during the burns, but no other action is required.