Before extensive phosphate mining began in the
1960s, the eastern portion of Tenoroc was part of a large wetland
system at the headwaters of Saddle Creek, the upper-most tributary
of the Peace River. The western portion of Tenoroc was part of a
wetland system associated with Lake Parker.
Phosphate mining significantly disrupted natural
drainage patterns by eliminating original wetlands and impounding
water in retention areas. Tenoroc currently exists as a mostly
mined-over site, with pit lakes, clay settling ponds, and sand
tailing areas. Only 17 percent (1,268 acres) is classified as
On spoil mounds in the mined areas, trees such as
live oak, cabbage palm, red maple, sweet gum, and wax myrtle have
become established. Several undisturbed areas of pine
flatwoods, swamps, and xeric oak are located in the Saddle Creek
Tract and in scattered spots elsewhere.
Upland vegetation surveys indicate that Tenoroc has
over 2,000 acres of invasive non-native vegetation including cogon
grass, Brazilian pepper, and Japanese climbing fern. Managers
remove these species and replant with native vegetation.