MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — At the corner of County Road 69 and Highway 169 in Shakopee, there’s a pretty mix of black-eyed Susan, Monarda, wild onion, milkweed and Canada goldenrod.
Jill from Chaska noticed it and emailed WCCO wanting to know: Does MnDOT plant wildflowers? Good Question.
MnDOT, along with Scott County, planted that particular wildflower seed mix at 169 and CR 69 two years ago after crew redid part of that roadway. According to MnDOT’s Tina Markeson, MnDOT is required by law to reestablish the vegetation in areas where they’ve turned over the soil.
Markeson says there are 30 mixes MnDOT uses that offer a wide range of grasses and flowers. Much of the decision on which mix to use depends on the roadway. For example, MnDOT assesses exposure to salt, erosion impacts, distance from the road, as well as visibility or safety issues. Is this an area MnDOT will have to mow? Can crews perform maintenance on the seedlings that require it?
MnDOT does plenty of work in this area, but doesn’t take credit for Mother Nature. Markeson says some of the flowers people might see are weeds.
“There’s a good combination,” she says. “It depends where you are.”