Scrub occurs on deep, well-drained white and yellow
Two types of scrub are found on Lake Wales Ridge Wildlife and
Environmental Area: oak scrub and rosemary scrub. Both are fire
dependent, although the interval between fires may range from 10 to
more than 100 years.
Oak scrub has moderate to dense growth of sand pine with lack of
fire. The understory is a thick combination of scrub oaks, rusty
lyonia, and silkbay. Rosemary scrub is dominated by scrub rosemary
and scrub oaks.
Paw paw in scrubby flatwoods
Rosemary scrub is usually found as small islands
within larger areas of scrubby flatwoods. Many scrub endemic plants
such as Highlands scrub, St. Johns wort, scrub blazing star, and
Ashe's savory are found in rosemary scrub.
Scrubby flatwoods occur on well-drained, white
sands at slightly lower elevation than sand pine scrub. Some pines
occur but these communities are usually dominated by sand live oak,
especially if fire is suppressed.
Scrubby flatwoods contain many endemic plants
including scrub pawpaw, scrub holly, scrub bay and Archbold oak.
Some of these areas have been converted to Bahia grass pastures,
and are now characterized by scattered oaks and palmettos growing
among cactus and grasses.
Flatwoods have an overstory of longleaf pine and
Southern slash pine and an understory consisting of wiregrass,
cutthroat grass, saw palmetto, gallberry, and ferns. On many
parcels flatwoods have degraded due to lack of fire, producing
dense stands of pines that pose a greater risk for wildfires.
Bayheads are dense strands of bay trees growing in
organic, often inundated soils. Around the edges of bayheads,
the understory is usually a thick growth of gallberry and
Depression Marshes and Seasonal
photos byKevin Main
Depression marshes and seasonal ponds - vegetation
may consist of cutthroat grass, maidencane, and St. Johns wort.
Pines are common along the edges. Seasonal ponds generally fill up
with water by mid-summer and begin to dry out at the end of the