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The east slope of the Sand Coulee valley is covered in oak trees. Last year, the ground beneath the canopy was packed with buckthorn, some of which was 60 years old. With that removed, there’s now room for native groundcover to grow back. Star Gazette photos by Katrina Styx

Sand Coulee restoration project in its final stage

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It takes a lot of work to reverse about 150 years of degrading habitat.

Since 2012, members of the Friends of the Mississippi River organization have been working to do just that: return a 268-acre piece of land to its native condition.

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Katrina Styx
Katrina Styx has been a reporter for the Hastings Star Gazette since 2010. She has a bachelor's degree in English with a minor in journalism from the University of Wisconsin - River Falls. Prior to coming to Hastings, Katrina reported for weekly newspapers in Jordan, Minn., and River Falls, Wis.
(651) 319-4501