Bennett Spring Hanging Fen

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Blue lobelia flowers on a stalk
Blue Lobelia
Designated as a natural area since
03/18/1982
Acreage
5
County
Dallas
Owner
MO Department of Natural Resources
Contact
Bennett Spring State Park
Contact Phone
417-532-4338

Points of Interest:

  • Carefully observe a fen wetland on a steep side slope.
  • Marvel at the development of a small wetland on a steep hillside surrounded by dry, rocky woods.

Natural Features Description:

This small fen wetland natural community is surrounded by xeric soils on a steep hillside. Historically this fen was maintained as an opening due to the saturation of the soil and periodic wildfires that burned through adjacent glades and woodlands. Characteristic fen plants include umbrella grass, swamp loosestrife, winged loosestrife, cowbane, and waxy meadow rue. This fen occurs on a series of ledges formed of dolomite of the Gasconade Formation.

Access Info

This natural area is in Bennett Spring State Park. This site is highly fragile and the fen should be observed from the edges only. Ask park staff for permission to visit this site. From the intersection of Highways 64 and 5 in Lebanon, travel west on Highway 64 for 10.5 miles. Then turn left onto Highway 64A. Follow this road one mile to the park entrance. Follow the signs to the park office and inquire there about accessing this natural area. A map and compass are recommended to explore the area.