Rare super bloom appears in Bellbrook prairie

A rare prairie super bloom has appeared in the Bellbrook Sugarcreek Park District.

Morris Reserve, a new 100-acre prairie, 3151 Lower Bellbrook Road, has erupted in wildflowers in shades of yellow, pink and purple.

Super blooms, a rare instance when multiple species of flowers bloom at the same time, only happen under the right weather conditions — lots of rain and high temperatures — according to Kendra Schide, the park’s chief naturalist, and usually only occurs once in the lifetime of a prairie.

More common in California and desert areas, a super bloom is unusual in Ohio.

“I’ve never seen one, I’ve only heard about it,” Schide said. “I was like ‘grab your cameras, call the newspaper.’ I practically got chills.”

Schide, who described the prairie as a “magical thing,” said the wildflowers are six to eight-feet tall, creating a cave-like feel as visitors drive by or walk through. Among the blooming plants are prairie cone flowers, bee balm and brown and black-eyed Susan.

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The super bloom will be at its peak for another week Schide said. She suggests visitors take the mile-long trail that borders the Little Miami River to see the prairie. It can also be seen from Lower Bellbrook Road and the parking lot.

Professional photographers visiting the prairie must fill out a commercial photography and film permit to take photos.

Morris Reserve is the newest addition to the Bellbrook Sugarcreek Park District park system. The 177 acres of woodland, prairies and meadows was acquired in 2016 from the Morris Family who owned the land for 198 years.

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