Busse Forest

Nature Preserve Area: 
Location and Access: 
From Elk Grove Village at jct. Hwy. 72 (Higgins Road) & Arlington Heights Road, take Higgins Road west 0.6 mile, then turn and go north on the forest preserve road 0.7 mile. The nature preserve is west of the road, east of Salt Creek and south of the Northwest Tollway.

Special Note: Trails and parking are available at this preserve.

Busse Forest was one of the first areas to be dedicated as an Illinois Nature Preserve. The site contains flatwoods, upland forest, and marsh communities of the Morainal Section of the Northeastern Morainal Natural Division. The flatwoods of northern Illinois are a particularly interesting feature. These areas formed long ago in slight depressions, where the soils are somewhat compact and poorly drained. This environment provides unique growing conditions for a mixture of swamp white oak, ash, red maple, blueflag iris, sedges and sensitive fern. The marsh community is present in larger glacial depressions that retain water most of the year. The upland forest canopy species include red oak, sugar maple, and basswood while woodland wildflowers such as jack-in-the-pulpit, wild geranium, bloodroot, woodland phlox and trilliums cover the forest floor. The preserve has been damaged by overbrowsing by deer. Deer control has begun and the natural area is recovering.  The Preserve is represented on two topo maps, Palatine and Arlington Heights 7.5


Forest Preserve District of Cook County
January 1965 as the 3rd Illinois Nature Preserve
440 acres
Topographic Quad: 
Topo Map: 
For further information: 
Contact: Forest Preserve District of Cook County, Conservation Department, 536 North Harlem Avenue, River Forest 60305 (708/771-1330)

1/2009 - R. Heidorn