I. Forest 10 I. A n a. Lowland tropical or subtropical seasonal evergreen forest 10




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I.A.4.N.a. Lowland temperate seasonal evergreen forest

A.55 Quercus virginiana - (Sabal palmetto) Forest Alliance


Live Oak - (Cabbage Palmetto) Forest Alliance

Alliance Concept

Summary: This alliance includes communities of barrier islands, maritime hammocks, and some more inland coastal hammocks and other fire-protected situations, which are dominated and characterized by Quercus virginiana, and often containing Sabal palmetto and Juniperus virginiana var. silicicola within their ranges. Habitats for associations in this alliance range from xeric and subxeric to moist. Vegetation of this alliance most typically lies just landward of maritime shrub zones; it ranges from temperate to subtropical and often has a component of deciduous broad-leaved trees as well, particularly in the north. Some examples are affected by varying intensities of salt spray; these situations display more-or-less wind- and salt spray-sculpted vegetation. Other upland examples are not affected by salt spray and correspondingly differ in composition and stature. Composition varies along a latitudinal gradient. Examples occur on sand flats, lower slopes, and on stabilized dunes that are protected from saltwater flooding but which experience light to moderate salt spray. Some more protected examples have relatively closed and diverse canopies and well-developed shrub strata; vines are often conspicuous and abundant, but the herbaceous stratum is typically sparse and low in diversity. This community occurs over moist, sandy soils, on low areas of the mainland coast, and stands are protected from the most extreme maritime influences (i.e., salt spray) but are susceptible to high winds and flooding during hurricanes. Extending south from the vicinity of Cape Fear, North Carolina, the canopy is dominated by Quercus virginiana and Pinus taeda with some Sabal palmetto. Farther south, Pinus elliottii var. elliottii replaces Pinus taeda, and Sabal palmetto becomes more prominent. In mid-Florida, tropical species begin to dominate the understory while temperate species retain canopy dominance. South of Martin County, Florida, tropical species such as Bursera simaruba, Sideroxylon foetidissimum, and Ficus aurea begin to dominate the forest canopy. The more tropically influenced examples may contain shrubs such as Eugenia axillaris, Myrsine floridana, and Coccoloba uvifera on the west coast of Florida, and Myrcianthes fragrans, Ardisia escallonoides, and Psychotria nervosa on the east coast. The alliance also includes tropical/temperate maritime hammocks of the east coast of Florida, in mid-peninsula, characteristically with oak canopy and tropical subcanopy; as well as temperate maritime hammocks of the northeast and Panhandle coasts of Florida. Vegetation of this alliance may be found on xeric to mesic sites, often occurring as linear strands behind frontal dunes. The seaward edge is generally found on the leeward side of dune complexes which provide shelter from excessive salt spray and overwash; this vegetation is also found on top of relict dune ridges and other areas with xeric to mesic hydrology. While relatively protected, the vegetation frequently exhibits effects of wind-pruning and salt spray. The alliance also includes some dry hammocks, found from Florida to North Carolina; in these examples, Quercus virginiana is dominant, and sometimes Juniperus virginiana var. silicicola is present in the canopy. Frequently small Cladina - Cladonia-dominated openings are present. On small hammocks in salt marshes, Juniperus virginiana var. silicicola, Baccharis halimifolia, and Morella cerifera are characteristic. Another type of xeric hammock contains Serenoa repens under a Quercus virginiana canopy. On Amelia Island, Florida, Magnolia grandiflora is characteristically in the understory, increasing after cutting or with a greater shell content in the soil. Some Mississippi vegetation included here is found on coastal sand ridges along inlets of marsh channels.
Environment: These forests occur on barrier islands or coastal hammocks, in situations ranging from xeric and subxeric to moist. Some examples are affected by varying intensities of salt spray; these situations display more-or-less wind- and salt spray-sculpted vegetation. Other upland examples are not affected by salt spray and correspondingly differ in composition and stature. This community occurs over moist, sandy soils, on low areas of the mainland coast, and stands are protected from the most extreme maritime influences (i.e., salt spray) but are susceptible to high winds and flooding during hurricanes. The alliance also includes tropical/temperate maritime hammocks of the east coast of Florida, in mid-peninsula, characteristically with oak canopy and tropical subcanopy; as well as temperate maritime hammocks of the northeast and Panhandle coasts of Florida. Vegetation of this alliance may be found on xeric to mesic sites, often occurring as linear strands behind frontal dunes. The seaward edge is generally found on the leeward side of dune complexes which provide shelter from excessive salt spray and overwash; this vegetation is also found on top of relict dune ridges and other areas with xeric to mesic hydrology. The alliance also includes some dry hammocks, found from Florida to North Carolina. Some Mississippi vegetation included here is found on coastal sand ridges along inlets of marsh channels.

Vegetation: These forest communities are dominated by Quercus virginiana, and often contain Sabal palmetto and Juniperus virginiana var. silicicola within their ranges. The northernmost examples, in Virginia and extreme northeastern North Carolina, contain Morella pensylvanica (= Myrica pensylvanica) as a shrub. Further south, stabilized dunes where salt spray is light to moderate display wind-sculpted vegetation dominated by Quercus virginiana and Quercus hemisphaerica with lesser amounts of Pinus taeda and Juniperus virginiana var. silicicola; typical understory components here include Persea borbonia, Carpinus caroliniana ssp. caroliniana, Juniperus virginiana var. silicicola, Cornus florida, Osmanthus americanus var. americanus, Ilex opaca var. opaca, and Zanthoxylum clava-herculis. Shrub species include Ilex vomitoria, Morella cerifera (= Myrica cerifera), Sabal minor, and Callicarpa americana. Dominant vines are Toxicodendron radicans, Vitis rotundifolia, Smilax spp., Parthenocissus quinquefolia, Bignonia capreolata, Berchemia scandens, Ampelopsis arborea, and Gelsemium sempervirens. Typical herbs are Mitchella repens, Asplenium platyneuron var. platyneuron, Chasmanthium laxum, Piptochaetium avenaceum, Galium pilosum, Dichanthelium commutatum, Elephantopus nudatus, and Passiflora lutea. Canopies in more protected examples are dominated by Quercus virginiana, Quercus hemisphaerica, and Pinus taeda and may also contain Quercus falcata, Carya glabra, Quercus nigra, and Pinus palustris. Understory species include Persea palustris, Magnolia virginiana, Osmanthus americanus var. americanus, Ilex opaca var. opaca, Juniperus virginiana var. silicicola, and Sassafras albidum. Typical shrubs in these examples include Ilex vomitoria, Morella cerifera, Hamamelis virginiana, and Sabal minor. Vines include Vitis rotundifolia, Smilax bona-nox, Gelsemium sempervirens, and Campsis radicans. Common herbaceous species are Mitchella repens and Asplenium platyneuron var. platyneuron. Extending south from the vicinity of Cape Fear, North Carolina, the canopy is dominated by Quercus virginiana and Pinus taeda with some Sabal palmetto. Farther south, Pinus elliottii var. elliottii replaces Pinus taeda, and Sabal palmetto becomes more prominent. In mid-Florida, tropical species begin to dominate the understory while temperate species retain canopy dominance. South of Martin County, Florida, tropical species, such as Bursera simaruba, Sideroxylon foetidissimum, and Ficus aurea, begin to dominate the forest canopy. These more tropically influenced examples may contain shrubs such as Eugenia axillaris, Myrsine floridana, and Coccoloba uvifera on the west coast of Florida, and Myrcianthes fragrans, Ardisia escallonoides, and Psychotria nervosa on the east coast. In some examples, small Cladina - Cladonia-dominated openings are present. Other characteristic species include Scleria triglomerata, Paronychia baldwinii, Cladina evansii, Stipulicida setacea, and Hypericum hypericoides. Some examples (e.g., on Amelia Island, Florida), Magnolia grandiflora is characteristically in the understory, increasing after cutting or with a greater shell content in the soil.
Dynamics: Habitats for associations in this alliance range from xeric and subxeric to moist. Vegetation of this alliance lies just landward of maritime shrub zones; it ranges from temperate to subtropical and often has a component of deciduous broad-leaved trees as well, particularly in the north. Some examples are affected by varying intensities of salt spray; these situations display more-or-less wind- and salt spray-sculpted vegetation. Other upland examples are not affected by salt spray and correspondingly differ in composition and stature. Composition varies along a latitudinal gradient; the northernmost examples, in Virginia and extreme northeastern North Carolina, contain Morella pensylvanica as a shrub. Farther south, stabilized dunes where salt spray is light to moderate display variants of this vegetation as well. Some Mississippi vegetation included here is found on coastal sand ridges along inlets of marsh channels. This alliance occurs on sandy soils which are generally poorly developed and low in natural fertility and organic matter content. It is typically found on old dunes which have been stable for long enough to permit forest growth. While fire cycles are generally long (26-100 years), Sabal palmetto is fire-resistant and produces flammable litter. Under dry conditions, fires will burn in from adjoining pinelands and kill fire-sensitive species such as Quercus hemisphaerica and some tropical species. In the northern portion of this community's range, siliceous sands dominate in preference to carbonate ones; the siliceous sands are generally nutrient-poor while carbonate ones are richer. Farther south, the carbonate fraction increases. Carbonate sands begin to dominate in the Deep South, especially along the coast of Florida. Barrier island soils are derived from material carried onto the island by water and wave action and not from weathering of rock. The major nutrient input to the terrestrial vegetation is from salt spray and precipitation.

Similar Alliances: Quercus virginiana - Carya illinoinensis Woodland Alliance (A.665) Quercus virginiana - Celtis laevigata Forest Alliance (A.374) Quercus virginiana - Juniperus virginiana - (Sabal palmetto) Woodland Alliance (A.479)--related vegetation which occurs under more severe conditions. Quercus virginiana - Quercus nigra Saturated Forest Alliance (A.379) Quercus virginiana - Quercus stellata Woodland Alliance (A.668)

Similar Alliance Comments: Also compare other West Gulf Coastal Plain Quercus virginiana alliances.

Alliance Distribution

Range: This alliance is found in Alabama, Florida, Georgia, North Carolina, South Carolina, Virginia, and possibly Mississippi.

Nations: US

Subnations: AL, FL, GA, MS?, NC, SC, VA

TNC Ecoregions: 53:C, 54:P, 55:C, 56:C, 57:C, 58:?

USFS Ecoregions: 232Bc:CCC, 232Be:CCC, 232Bf:CCC, 232Bg:CCC, 232Bh:CCC, 232Bi:CCP, 232Bj:CCC, 232Bo:CC?, 232Bp:CCP, 232Ca:CCC, 232Cb:CCC, 232Cc:CCP, 232Ce:CCC, 232Cf:CC?, 232Ch:CCC, 232Ci:CCC, 232Db:CCC, 232Dc:CCC, 232Dd:CCC, 232De:CCC, 232Ga:CCP, 232Gb:CCC, 232Gc:CCP, 232Gd:CCP

Federal Lands: DOD (Cape Canaveral, Eglin, Tyndall?); NPS (Cape Hatteras, Cape Lookout, Cumberland Island, Fort Pulaski); USFS (Apalachicola, Croatan, De Soto, Francis Marion, Ocala, Osceola); USFWS (Back Bay, Blackbeard Island?, Bon Secour, Cape Romain, Currituck, Lake Woodruff?, Merritt Island?, Swanquarter?, Wassaw?, Wolf Island?)

Alliance Sources

Author(s): D.J. Allard, mod. Southeastern Ecology Group

References: Abrahamson et al. 1984, Allard 1990, Ambrose 1990a, Austin and Coleman-Marois 1977, Bellis 1992, Bourdeau and Oosting 1959, Clewell 1971, Duever and Brinson 1984b, Eyre 1980, FNAI 1990, FNAI 1992a, FNAI 1992b, Gaddy 1981, Godfrey 1976, Harshberger 1914, Hillestad et al. 1975, Johnson and Barbour 1990, Johnson et al. 1974, Johnson et al. 1990b, Kurz 1942, LeGrand et al. 1992, Nelson 1986, Platt and Schwartz 1990, Rayner 1984, Rayner and Batson 1976, Sandifer et al. 1980, Schafale and Weakley 1990, Sharitz 1975, South Carolina Wildlife and Marine Resources Department 1984, Wentworth et al. 1993, Wharton 1978

[CEGL007813] Juniperus virginiana var. silicicola - (Quercus virginiana, Sabal palmetto) Forest


Translated Name: Coastal Red-cedar - (Live Oak, Cabbage Palmetto) Forest

Common Name: Cedar - Live Oak - Cabbage Palmetto Marsh Hammock



Ecological System(s): Atlantic Coastal Plain Embayed Region Tidal Salt and Brackish Marsh (CES203.260)

Atlantic Coastal Plain Central Salt and Brackish Tidal Marsh (CES203.270)



Status: Standard Circumscription Confidence: 2 - Moderate

Concept Author(s): A.S. Weakley and T. Govus

Element Concept

Global Summary: This association occupies marsh hammocks (small islands surrounded by tidal marsh) along the South Atlantic Coast from eastern North Carolina south through South Carolina and Georgia to northeastern Florida. Related vegetation along central Florida spring runs is also covered here for now. The canopy can be relatively open or completely closed. Juniperus virginiana var. silicicola typically dominates the canopy, while other species such as Quercus virginiana, Sabal palmetto, and Celtis laevigata var. laevigata may be present. This association is related to other associations in this alliance in the same geographic range but differs in being shorter in stature, juniper-dominated, with fewer strata, and floristically depauperate (often with some marsh species present).

Environmental Description

USFWS Wetland System:

Global Environment: This association occupies marsh hammocks (small islands surrounded by tidal marsh) along the South Atlantic Coast. In North Carolina this type is found primarily in a matrix of brackish or full salt marshes (M. Schafale pers. comm.). The community may be dependent on occasional salty inundation to keep less salt-tolerant plants out. Related vegetation found near the edge of Silver Glen Spring Run, Ocala National Forest in Florida is also covered here for now.

Vegetation Description

Global Vegetation: Juniperus virginiana var. silicicola typically dominates the canopy, while other species, such as Quercus virginiana, Sabal palmetto, and Celtis laevigata var. laevigata, may be present. Exotic species, such as Triadica sebifera (= Sapium sebiferum), Tamarix spp., and Melia azedarach, can be invasive in these communities. On Ocala National Forest a plot attributed to this association is additionally characterized by Quercus hemisphaerica, Callicarpa americana, Persea borbonia, Morella caroliniensis, Ageratina aromatica, Dichondra carolinensis, Oplismenus hirtellus ssp. setarius, Chasmanthium sessiliflorum, Thelypteris kunthii, Parthenocissus quinquefolia, Bignonia capreolata, Toxicodendron radicans, Smilax smallii, and Vitis aestivalis (NatureServe Ecology unpubl. data).

Global Dynamics: This association is related to other associations in this alliance in the same geographic range but differs in being shorter in stature, juniper-dominated, with fewer strata, and floristically depauperate. These communities' simpler structure may be maintained in part by infrequent catastrophic storm events (hurricane wind and overwash events).

Species Name Stratum Lifeform Dom Char Const

Global Floristic Composition

Species Name Stratum Lifeform Dom Char Const

Higher Taxon Note

Species Name GRank Animal Note (specifyRare(geogarea),Invasive,Animal,orOther)

Global Other Noteworthy Species

Species Name GRank Animal Note (specifyRare(geogarea),Invasive,Animal,orOther)

Conservation Status Rank

Global Rank & Reasons: G3? (14-Dec-1998). This community occupies marsh hammock islands along the South Atlantic Coast of North Carolina, South Carolina, Georgia, and northern Florida. This community is restricted in occurrence, and most occurrences are small, but threats are few.

Related Concepts

Global Similar Associations: Juniperus virginiana var. silicicola - Zanthoxylum clava-herculis - Quercus virginiana - (Sabal palmetto) / Sageretia minutiflora - (Sideroxylon tenax) Woodland (CEGL003525)--more calcareous. Quercus virginiana - (Juniperus virginiana) - Zanthoxylum clava-herculis / Sideroxylon lanuginosum Woodland (CEGL003523)--more open, more Sabal palmetto. Sabal palmetto - (Juniperus virginiana var. silicicola) Woodland (CEGL003526)

Global Related Concepts:

Classification & Other Comments

Global Classification Comments: There are examples of this type in Onslow County, North Carolina, and in the brackish marshes of the Embayed Region of North Carolina, such as along the estuarine Pungo River, and probably Swanquarter National Wildlife Refuge as well (M. Schafale pers. comm.). This type is presumably most common in the Sea Islands region. The hydrology of this association is variable, and some examples are near the conceptual border between upland, saturated, and tidal. These communities' simpler structure may be maintained in part by infrequent catastrophic storm events (hurricane wind and overwash events). Exotic species, such as Triadica sebifera (= Sapium sebiferum), Tamarix spp., and Melia azedarach can be invasive in these communities.

Element Distribution

Global Range: This association is found along the South Atlantic Coast from eastern North Carolina south through South Carolina and Georgia to northeastern Florida. Related vegetation along certain central Florida spring runs is also covered here for now.

Nations: US

States/Provinces: FL, GA, NC, SC

TNC Ecoregions: 55:C, 56:C, 57:C

TNC Ecoregion Comments: ECO55 added CWN 5-02.

USFS Ecoregions: 232Bf:CCC, 232Cb:CCC, 232Ce:CCC, 232Ci:CCC

Federal Lands: NPS (Fort Pulaski); USFS (Ocala); USFWS (Swanquarter?)

Element Sources
Global Description Author(s): C.W. Nordman
References (enter Reference Code when known, otherwise, enter Short Citation; enter full citation if reference is new)

Reference (*=concept ref) name classif related char rank eospec eorank manage image

NatureServe Ecology - Southeastern U.S. unpubl. data . . . X . . . . .

Peet et al. unpubl. data 2002 . . . X . . . . .

Schafale pers. comm. . . . X . . . . .

Southeastern Ecology Working Group n.d.* X° . . . . . . . .

[CEGL007032] Quercus virginiana - (Pinus elliottii var. elliottii, Sabal palmetto) / Persea borbonia - Callicarpa americana Forest


Translated Name: Live Oak - (Slash Pine, Cabbage Palmetto) / Redbay - Beautyberry Forest

Common Name: Maritime Live Oak Hammock



Ecological System(s): Atlantic Coastal Plain Southern Maritime Forest (CES203.537)

East Gulf Coastal Plain Maritime Forest (CES203.503)



Atlantic Coastal Plain Central Maritime Forest (CES203.261)

Status: Standard Circumscription Confidence: 2 - Moderate

Concept Author(s): K.D. Patterson

Element Concept

Global Summary: This forest of barrier islands and related habitats has a low to moderately high tree canopy, often stunted and pruned by salt spray into streamlined shapes. The canopy is mostly closed with well-developed subcanopy and shrub layers and a sparse herb layer. Along the seaward edge of this community, the canopy tends to be quite low in stature with shrub species grading smoothly into the dominant canopy species. Vines are often an important component. This community ranges from Smith Island complex, Brunswick County, North Carolina, south to mid-peninsula, Atlantic Coast Florida (Cape Canaveral); the concept also includes temperate maritime hammocks of the northeastern and Panhandle coasts of Florida. The species composition varies along a latitudinal gradient throughout the geographic limits of its range. In general, from Cape Fear, North Carolina (Bald Head Island), south to mid-South Carolina, the canopy is dominated by Quercus virginiana and Pinus taeda occurring with Sabal palmetto. Farther south, Pinus elliottii var. elliottii replaces Pinus taeda, and Sabal palmetto becomes more prominent. Some floristic elements of the Georgia islands, such as Lyonia ferruginea and Forestiera segregata, are completely absent from barrier islands in the Carolinas. Serenoa repens does not occur on the North Carolina barrier islands. This association has been found along the St. Johns River in Florida on the Ocala National Forest, far upstream from brackish water influence. In mid-Florida, tropical species begin to dominate the understory while temperate species retain canopy dominance. South of Martin County, Florida, tropical species such as Bursera simaruba, Sideroxylon foetidissimum, and Ficus aurea begin to dominate the forest canopy and mark the northern limits of the Tropical Barrier Island Forest community.

Environmental Description

USFWS Wetland System:

Global Environment: This community is found on xeric to mesic sites within the range described, often occurring as linear strands behind frontal dunes. The seaward edge of this vegetation is generally found on the leeward side of dune complexes which are capable of providing shelter from excessive salt spray and overwash. The interior of this community occurs on top of relict dune ridges and other areas with xeric to mesic hydrology.
The soils of these forests are generally poorly developed, sandy soils, low in natural fertility and organic matter content. In the northern portion of this community's range, siliceous sands dominate with little in the way of carbonate sands present. Further south, the carbonate fraction increases. In the deep south, and especially along the coast of Florida, carbonate sands begin to dominate. In terms of nutrients, siliceous sands are quite poor while carbonate sands are somewhat richer. Barrier island soils are derived from material carried onto the island by water and wave action and not from weathering of rock. The major input of nutrients to the terrestrial vegetation is from salt spray and precipitation (Godfrey 1976).

Vegetation Description

Global Vegetation: This forest has a low to moderately high tree canopy, often stunted and pruned by salt spray into streamlined shapes. The canopy is mostly closed with well-developed subcanopy and shrub layers and a sparse herb layer. The canopy along the seaward edge of this community tends to be quite low in stature with shrub species grading smoothly into the dominant canopy species. Vines are often an important component of this community. Species that may be found in the canopy, subcanopy or shrub layers include Quercus virginiana, Sabal palmetto, Pinus elliottii var. elliottii, Pinus taeda, Magnolia grandiflora, Persea borbonia, Quercus hemisphaerica, Quercus nigra, Quercus phellos, Magnolia virginiana, Acer rubrum var. drummondii, Liquidambar styraciflua, Juniperus virginiana var. silicicola, Celtis laevigata, Morella cerifera (= Myrica cerifera), Ilex vomitoria, Osmanthus americanus var. americanus, Sabal minor, Serenoa repens, Ilex opaca var. opaca, Carpinus caroliniana ssp. caroliniana, Cornus florida, Prunus caroliniana, Zanthoxylum clava-herculis, Callicarpa americana, Baccharis halimifolia, Baccharis angustifolia, Lyonia lucida, Sageretia minutiflora, Sideroxylon tenax, Vaccinium arboreum, Forestiera segregata, and Opuntia humifusa var. humifusa. Typical vines and herbaceous species include Toxicodendron radicans, Smilax spp., Vitis rotundifolia, Parthenocissus quinquefolia, Houstonia procumbens, Bignonia capreolata, Mitchella repens, Berchemia scandens, Ampelopsis arborea, Oplismenus hirtellus ssp. setarius (= Oplismenus setarius), Boehmeria cylindrica, Galium pilosum, Dichanthelium commutatum, Elephantopus nudatus, Passiflora incarnata, Passiflora lutea, Scleria triglomerata, Piptochaetium avenaceum, Panicum spp., Chasmanthium laxum, Juncus spp., Asplenium platyneuron var. bacculum-rubrum, Osmunda cinnamomea, and Woodwardia virginica. In general, from Cape Fear, North Carolina, south to mid-South Carolina, the canopy is dominated by Quercus virginiana and Pinus taeda occurring with Sabal palmetto. Farther south, Pinus elliottii var. elliottii replaces Pinus taeda, and Sabal palmetto becomes more prominent. Some floristic elements of the Georgia islands, such as Lyonia ferruginea and Forestiera segregata, are completely absent from barrier islands in the Carolinas. Serenoa repens does not occur on the North Carolina barrier islands. In mid-Florida, tropical species begin to dominate the understory while temperate species retain canopy dominance. South of Martin County, Florida, tropical species such as Bursera simaruba, Sideroxylon foetidissimum, and Ficus aurea begin to dominate the forest canopy and mark the northern limits of the Tropical Barrier Island Forest community. At the northern limit of the range of this type, Persea palustris may replace Persea borbonia.

Global Dynamics:

Species Name Stratum Lifeform Dom Char Const

Global Floristic Composition

Species Name Stratum Lifeform Dom Char Const

Juniperus virginiana var. silicicola Tree canopy Needle-leaved tree X . .

Pinus elliottii var. elliottii Tree canopy Needle-leaved tree X X .

Pinus taeda Tree canopy Needle-leaved tree X X .

Quercus virginiana Tree canopy Broad-leaved evergreen tree X X .

Sabal palmetto Tree canopy Palm tree X . .

Juniperus virginiana var. silicicola Tree subcanopy Needle-leaved tree X X .

Celtis laevigata Tree subcanopy Broad-leaved deciduous tree X . .

Persea borbonia Tree subcanopy Broad-leaved evergreen tree X X .

Parthenocissus quinquefolia Shrub/sapling (tall & short) Vine/Liana X . .

Toxicodendron radicans Shrub/sapling (tall & short) Vine/Liana X . .

Vitis rotundifolia Shrub/sapling (tall & short) Vine/Liana X . .

Prunus caroliniana Tall shrub/sapling Broad-leaved evergreen tree . X .

Serenoa repens Tall shrub/sapling Broad-leaved evergreen tree X X .

Sideroxylon tenax Tall shrub/sapling Broad-leaved evergreen tree . X .

Sabal minor Tall shrub/sapling Palm tree X . .

Sabal palmetto Tall shrub/sapling Palm tree . X .

Ilex vomitoria Tall shrub/sapling Broad-leaved evergreen shrub X X .

Morella cerifera Tall shrub/sapling Broad-leaved evergreen shrub X X .

Osmanthus americanus var. americanus Tall shrub/sapling Broad-leaved evergreen shrub X . .

Mitchella repens Herb (field) Semi-shrub X . .

Toxicodendron radicans Herb (field) Vine/Liana X . .

Chasmanthium laxum Herb (field) Graminoid X . .

Asplenium platyneuron var. bacculum-rubrum Herb (field) Fern or fern ally X . .

Higher Taxon Note

Species Name GRank Animal Note (specifyRare(geogarea),Invasive,Animal,orOther)

Global Other Noteworthy Species

Species Name GRank Animal Note (specifyRare(geogarea),Invasive,Animal,orOther)

Agrimonia incisa G3 P

Cynanchum scoparium - P

Cyperus tetragonus - P

Sageretia minutiflora - P

Sideroxylon tenax G3? P

Conservation Status Rank

Global Rank & Reasons: G2 (31-Dec-1997). This maritime forest association has a low to moderately high tree canopy, often stunted and pruned by salt spray into streamlined shapes. This community is found on xeric to mesic sites from Brunswick County, North Carolina, south to mid-peninsula Atlantic Coast Florida (Cape Canaveral). It often occurs as linear strands behind frontal dunes. The seaward edge of this vegetation is generally found on the leeward side of dune complexes which are capable of providing shelter from excessive salt spray and overwash. The interior of this community occurs on top of relict dune ridges and other areas with xeric to mesic hydrology. The composition varies along a latitudinal gradient throughout the geographic limits of its range. This community has a restricted range, and much of it has been lost as the result of human activity. Historically, animal grazing, land clearing, and fire had significant impacts on barrier island vegetation. However, the greatest damage to this vegetation has occurred in more recent years with the development of summer residences and cities on barrier islands. Many remaining occurrences have been fragmented, and their long-term viability is now questionable, since disturbance of the stream-lined canopy profile can result in overexposure of interior trees and branches to the deleterious effects of salt spray. Such exposure can result in canopy die-back and a shift in the floristic composition of the forest. The exotic Triadica sebifera has successfully established in many occurrences of this community.

Related Concepts

Global Similar Associations: Quercus virginiana - Pinus clausa / Carya (glabra, pallida) / Serenoa repens Forest (CEGL004976) Quercus virginiana - Quercus hemisphaerica - Pinus taeda / Persea (borbonia, palustris) - Ilex vomitoria Forest (CEGL007027)--found to the north of CEGL007032 with some minor overlap in range.

Global Related Concepts:

  • IA9d. South Atlantic Barrier Island Forest (Allard 1990) ?

  • Interdune Forest (Ambrose 1990a) B

  • Maritime Strand Forest (Ambrose 1990a) B

  • Oak-Magnolia forest (Sharitz 1975) ?

Classification & Other Comments

Global Classification Comments: Sharitz (1975) reports "Palmetto forest" on Kiawah Island, South Carolina, dominated by Sabal palmetto and Quercus hemisphaerica, with Pinus palustris, Pinus taeda, Juniperus virginiana var. silicicola, Magnolia grandiflora, and Morella cerifera (= Myrica cerifera). The open understory is dominated by Ilex vomitoria. In terms of dominant species, this community is very similar to the inland maritime forests of the South Atlantic but differs by its occurrence on outer barrier islands, its younger soils, and by its relatively low species richness. Similar communities occur on the mid-Atlantic and Gulf coasts. They may be distinguished by their geographic location and the resulting differences in species composition. On Kiawah Island, South Carolina, Magnolia grandiflora may be codominant in the canopy. Pinus taeda, Pinus palustris, and Sabal palmetto may also be present; Ilex vomitoria and Persea borbonia dominate the understory; Vaccinium sp. and Crataegus sp. are also present (Sharitz 1975). On nearby Seabrook Island, this forest type (or a slightly more inland variant) is found on ancient relictual dunes and additionally contains Carya sp. and Ulmus sp. (Ulmus 'floridana') in the canopy; Liquidambar styraciflua and Acer rubrum in the subcanopy (E. Harrison pers. comm.).

Element Distribution

Global Range: This community ranges from Smith Island complex, Brunswick County, North Carolina, south to mid-peninsula, Atlantic Coast Florida (Cape Canaveral); the concept also includes temperate maritime hammocks of the northeastern and Panhandle coasts of Florida.

Nations: US

States/Provinces: AL, FL, GA, MS?, NC, SC

TNC Ecoregions: 53:C, 55:C, 56:C, 57:C

TNC Ecoregion Comments:

USFS Ecoregions: 232Ce:CCC, 232Ci:CCC, 232Dc:CCC, 232Gb:CCC

Federal Lands: NPS (Cumberland Island?, Fort Pulaski); USFS (Francis Marion, Ocala); USFWS (Bon Secour, Cape Romain, Lake Woodruff?)

Element Sources
Cape Romain National Wildlife Refuge Description Author(s): M. Pyne

Cumberland Island National Seashore Description Author(s): M. Pyne

Francis Marion National Forest Description Author(s): M. Pyne

Global Description Author(s): K.D. Patterson
References (enter Reference Code when known, otherwise, enter Short Citation; enter full citation if reference is new)

Reference (*=concept ref) name classif related char rank eospec eorank manage image

Allard 1990 . . X X X . . . .

Ambrose 1990a . . X X X . . . .

Aulbach-Smith 1984 . . . X . . . . .

Bozeman 1975 . . . X . . . . .

FNAI 1992a . X . X X . . . .

Gaddy 1981 . X . X X . . . .

Godfrey 1976 . X . X X . . . .

Hardin 1990 . X . X X . . . .

Harrison pers. comm. . X . X X . . . .

Hillestad et al. 1975 . X . X X . . . .

Johnson et al. 1990b . X . X X . . . .

Nelson 1986 . X . X X . . . .

Peet et al. unpubl. data 2002 . . . X . . . . .

Rayner 1984 . X . X X . . . .

Rayner and Batson 1976 . X . X X . . . .

Sandifer et al. 1980 . X . X X . . . .

Schafale and Weakley 1990 . X . X X . . . .

Schotz pers. comm. . . . . . . . . .

Sharitz 1975 . X X X X . . . .

Soil Conservation Service 1980 . . . X . . . . .

Soil Conservation Service 1982 . . . X . . . . .

South Carolina Wildlife and Marine Resources . X . X X . . . . Department 1984

Southeastern Ecology Working Group n.d.* X° . . . . . . . .



Wharton 1978 . X . X X . . . .
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