You might wonder, what’s a fen? It is a type of wetland, but different from most because it is fed by mineral-rich ground water, which makes the soil pH mostly neutral to alkaline, compared to the acidity of bogs. Seasonal changes in water levels and peat build-up mean that plant (and animal) distributions can be quite clumped, depending on soil moisture and nutrients.
Fens can be dominated by marshy meadows of grasses with clumps of perennial forbs scattered about,
but prone to invasion of woody vegetation, especially where the soil is drier.
With so much plant diversity in this area, there were quite a few pollinators out. I saw more butterflies and bees than any other place I have been this summer.
This little acreage in the middle of the Blaine, MN suburbia is definitely worth a second (or third) visit. It has just recently been acquired by the state Department of Natural Resources and designated a Scientific and Natural Area (SNA).