Death to the Bradford pear
Bradford pear trees — an invasive species that chokes out native plants — are blooming all across Kansas and Missouri right now, so it’s the perfect time for biologists to track them down and kill them. Plus, why a Missouri prison is training incarcerated men in computer programming.
Invasive plants such as Bradford pear trees, which you might recognize from the white flowers blooming this time of year, are spreading like weeds across Kansas and Missouri. And they're wiping out food for birds, butterflies and other wildlife. Kansas News Service reporters Celia Llopis-Jepsen and Blaise Mesa explain what's being done to solve the problem.
Almost half of all people released from prison in Missouri return within five years. But research shows prison education can help break this cycle. As St. Louis Public Radio’s Shahla Farzan reports, one nonprofit is betting on this approach by training the next generation of computer programmers while they’re incarcerated at the Missouri Eastern Correctional Center.
Kansas City Today is hosted by Nomin Ujiyediin. It is produced by Byron Love with Trevor Grandin and edited by Gabe Rosenberg and Lisa Rodriguez.
You can support Kansas City Today by becoming a KCUR member: kcur.org/donate