Canadian Rye Grass Cool Season Grasses Webinar

Cool-Season Grasses

In spring, cool-season grasses emerge, grow, and flower. These grasses play an important role in providing habitat and food sources in the early spring before warm-season grasses emerge and flower in the summer. Grass identification doesn't have to be overwhelming! By learning what characteristics to look for, you can start to demystify the bunches of grass you see on your next hike.

This program will equip participants with the tools needed to start telling apart one grass from another. Review the basics of grass identification and dive into identification of cool-season grasses in Illinois. You'll learn about both native and non-native grasses in Illinois, though lawn grasses are not the focus of this specific webinar.

Registration is required. Join live and ask your questions directly of our specialists, or listen to the recording anytime after the webinar on Extension's YouTube channel. If you will need an accommodation in order to participate, please email Erin Garrett at Early requests are strongly encouraged to allow sufficient time to meet your access needs.


Erin Garrett draws on her own field experiences of identifying grasses across the Midwest to offer tips and tricks to finding out which species you are looking at. 

Erin is the Energy and Environmental Stewardship Extension educator for University of Illinois Extension in the southernmost five counties in Illinois: Alexander, Johnson, Massac, Pulaski and Union counties. In this role, Erin develops and delivers high impact programming to local and statewide audiences to help them develop an appreciation for natural resources and to empower them to make small changes to positively impact the environment.

Erin earned her master’s degree in plant biology from Southern Illinois University in 2017, where her research focused on the interactions of an invasive legume with native forbs, grasses, and legumes. She earned her bachelor’s degree in environmental studies from the College of Saint Benedict in 2015. She currently serves as a board member for the Southern Chapter of the Illinois Native Plant Society. The Illinois Extension Smart Grid Outreach Team was awarded the Interdisciplinary State Team Excellence Award from University of Illinois Extension in November 2019.

Prior to her time with Extension, Erin was a conservation education representative at the Barkhausen Cache River Wetlands Center for Illinois Department of Natural Resources, and worked three consecutive summers as a grassland restoration / monitoring technician for The Nature Conservancy.