Why we do it

The answer is as clear as a sunny afternoon on the trail. See the dozens of joggers, bikers, and children walking with parents—all surrounded in natural beauty. You’ll understand.

Native Plants

naturally good neighbors
Over centuries, native plants evolved together with birds, butterflies and other species to create a balanced, healthy environment.

Alien Invasion!

Not little green men, but little green plants from across the seas—often beautiful, but frequently evil. Many are brought here as decorative ground cover. Sometimes they arrive as hitchhikers.

Monarch Hatchery

Observe, both in the wild or at our children-friendly hatchery, the monarch butterfly growing from egg to caterpillar, caterpillar to chrysalis, and chrysalis to majestic monarch.

Volunteer and Support

We need your help. The Friends of the Green Bay Trail is an entirely volunteer organization. Join us when you can.

The Friends Receive Triple Matching Grant from Illinois Clean Energy Community Foundation

ICECF has awarded the Friends a grant valued up to $27,000 for stewardship expenses and expanding volunteer support. Contributions to FGBT will be matched 3-1 up to $21,000 for site preparation, tree and plant purchases and installation on the challenging slope located between Woodlawn and Scott Avenues. An additional$6,000 will be provided when volunteer hour targets for work on the trail and social media are met.

Your donation sets us on the path to 3x more!

  • $1,000 makes you a Trailblazer
  • $500 buys a native tree
  • $200 buys a large native shrub
  • $100 buys a flat of wildflower plugs


What we do

We are environmental stewards of the Green Bay Trail, restoring a natural,  prairie eco-system. Our goal is to make the trail a national example of the healthy intersection of nature and culture that inspires community and individual well-being. LEARN MORE

Friday Fun Facts – Did you know?

Spring ephemeral – Spring Beauty

Spring beauty corms were dug up and eaten by Native American children who called them underground “candy.”


Monarch caterpillars rule all the realm they can see. And they can see a lot, because they have 12 eyes! On each side of their head, they have 6 tiny eyelets, called stemmata, arranged in a semi-circle.

Check out what we've accomplished in 2019!

This was a busy year of hard work and fun-filled activities along the Green Bay Trail, and we are glad that you could be a part of it! The Friends are proud that, with volunteers and donors like you, our many successes included:

  • 65 new trees and 146 shrubs protected and cared for
  • 3,100 native wildflowers and sedges planted; 4.5 million wildflower seeds scattered
  • 6,200 landscape staples installed to protect young plants from deer
  • New monarch hatchery for public viewing of the monarch life cycle
  • A safe and secure bridge and steps to access the hatchery from the Trail
  • First Green Bay Trail Day, in conjunction with local merchants, with 500 breakfasts served by The Girl and the Goat, thanks to Charles Schwab
  • 7 free community programs for families to enjoy the outdoors
  • 14 workdays for volunteers to maintain the Trail
  • Soil-testing and mineral supplementation of soil
  • Tri-party agreement with Glencoe’s Village and Park District for Trail watering
  • Coordination with Village of Glencoe to install drains for excessive rainfall and runoff
  • Access agreement with Union Pacific Railroad for control of invasives on its property
  • 2nd place for best 4th of July Parade float in Glencoe

Upcoming Events

There are no upcoming events at this time.

About Native Plants

From the Field Museum

Subscribe To Our Newsletter

Join our mailing list to receive the latest news and updates from our team.

You have Successfully Subscribed!