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NC_Palms

Coniferous Forest in the South?

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NC_Palms

Lets discus this. I have always been found on how the Southeastern Coastal Plain has been defined a biome as a whole. Some consider apart of the larger temperate deciduous forest and others consider it apart another temperate biome - the coniferous forest. I've heard it be referenced as a subtropical coniferous forest with high influences of both the tropics and the temperates. Whats your opinion on how to identify the Southern coastal plain and the pine regions as a whole?

https://i.pinimg.com/564x/be/0d/d9/be0dd99a7514c4e8ce3c10602d8a3056.jpg 

This map is from the WWF and they consider the Southern coastal plain to be a temperate coniferous forest. Their defintion of Temperate Coniferous forest covers Florida slash pine prairies to  Alaskan fir forest

https://www.nrcs.usda.gov/wps/portal/nrcs/detail/ga/home/?cid=stelprdb1254129

Heres a map of the Longleaf pine. Longleaf pine ecosystems were the dominate forest type on the coastal plain before the Civil War. There range crosses out of the WWF definition into the Southeastern mixed forest ecoregion. 

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Subtropics

wikipedia includes everything until Virginia Beach as Subtropical

 

 

Edited by NC_Palms

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Nj Palms

Here in the pine barrens basically the only tree is pitch pine.

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Nj Palms

Some long leaf pine mixed in.

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mdsonofthesouth

Most of Maryland and Virginia are humid subtropic. Longleaf can grow here, but either isn't endemic or fell victim like loblolly and bald cypress in early colonial days. Thankfully loblolly is fast growing but still is a shadow of its pre colonial self in the DMV. Sadly bald cypress is not fast growing and is very much a protected species here in the DMV. Suffice it to say the eastern US is still reeling from the deforestation of those days....that and urban sprawl.

Edited by mdsonofthesouth

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mdsonofthesouth
On 5/2/2018, 8:14:06, Nj Palms said:

Some long leaf pine mixed in.

 I think you're thinking about the loblolly that was naturalized there some years ago in far southern NJ.

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Nj Palms

No,I have seen long leaf and loblolly in south jersey.

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mdsonofthesouth

Wonder if it will naturalize. Its not as hardy as loblolly.

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NC_Palms

Longleaf pine grows naturally up into Virginia. I think some longleaf pines are planted up in the D.C area. 

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Matthew92

Most of the southeast U.S. is considered the humid subtropics: even most of the FL peninsula. I am visiting the Orlando area right now, and I marvel at how the woods around here are practically a carbon copy of my area in NW Florida.

The longleaf pine forest stretched as far south in Florida as Lake Okeechobee. See article.

Long-Leaf Pines of Lake Okeechobee

 

img_7272-4.jpg?w=1024&h=768

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necturus

I always marvel at reports that early settlers could ride at full gallop through the coniferous forests of east Texas. It shows that they were all cut down! The pines that have replaced them are not the same, the dense forests of Sam Houston National Forest. I imagine it once looked like that picture. Very cool.

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NC_Palms
On 5/19/2018, 10:23:03, Opal92 said:

Most of the southeast U.S. is considered the humid subtropics: even most of the FL peninsula. I am visiting the Orlando area right now, and I marvel at how the woods around here are practically a carbon copy of my area in NW Florida.

The longleaf pine forest stretched as far south in Florida as Lake Okeechobee. See article.

Long-Leaf Pines of Lake Okeechobee

 

img_7272-4.jpg?w=1024&h=768

Central Florida and North Florida are both apart of the Southeastern conifer forest ecoregion. When you reach Palm Beach county and the Everglades, the conifer forest becomes replaced by tropical broadleaves. 

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NC_Palms
On 5/2/2018, 6:22:22, Palmsbro said:

Wikipedia article on this, which says that these coniferous forests are 'subtopical/tropical' and gives a different map than your .jpg image: https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Southeastern_conifer_forests.

I have no current personal definition of these forests myself.

That is specifically the Southeastern conifer forest ecoregion. The image I gave in the .jpd was the entire biome. According to Wikipedia the entire coniferous forest biome stretches from Maryland to Texas into Florida. 

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mdsonofthesouth
On 5/21/2018, 10:41:32, NC_Palms said:

That is specifically the Southeastern conifer forest ecoregion. The image I gave in the .jpd was the entire biome. According to Wikipedia the entire coniferous forest biome stretches from Maryland to Texas into Florida. 

 

The eastern half of the DMV is mostly southern yellow pine. The delmarva peninsula is almost only southern yellow pine with anything else being planted most likely. Essentially the costal plains and tidewater regions to a lesser extent. The piedmont region has a healthy mix of trees with good strands of pine here and there. We have loblolly spots as far west as Mount airy in the tri-county area, although we are starting to get into the shortleaf region (still southern yellow) as we approach appalachia.

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Bill H2DB

Having lived in this area for over 66 years , here is my take on the pine forests .

I graduated from the long gone downtown Mainland High School , in 1962 .

Our  ' tongue in cheek" class song was.....Pine Tree , Pine tree , Pine tree........

I am not well versed on the species , but :

One of the industries in the area was the Turpentine gathering . Slash Pines and the scars can still be seen in the

undeveloped areas all around .

Another industry hereabouts was the Pulpwood gathering and transporting to the mills , mostly in the Palatka area .   Out and away , that still is ongoing

but is highly mechanized .    In older days , on side roads , it was common to get caught behind a drastically overloaded truck , stacked  Way Too high, as it 

made it's way to the mill .

Lumbering happened too . Sawmills here and there .

Here and there even in town , there are a few remnants of the native Longleaf ,hard pine, and other species. They are getting quite old now , and

are not being replaced .

  There are still stands of the Sand Pines in the area , and generally indicate well drained , deep sand places .

These stretch across to and through the Ocala National forest .

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Jimbean

Well, here are my observations for east central Florida:  Pond pine ( Pinus serotina ) grow as far south as northern Osceola county and central Brevard; Longleaf pine ( Pinus palustris ) as far south as Okeechobee and Indian River counties; Loblolly pine ( Pinus taeda ) as far south as Orange and northern Brevard counties.  Sand pine ( Pinus clausa ) grow mostly on scrub habitat along the east coast as far south as Broward county.  Slash pine of course grow everywhere, but as far as a distinction between densa and elliottii, there is no clear cut difference but generally slash pines exhibit more densa characteristics the further south you go.  The closet there is to a boundary between the two slash pine varieties may be in southern Volusia county

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mdsonofthesouth

Pond pine is another one I forget about that we have too. I heard slash pine is hardy to zone 7 also which is surprising given their current native range, but then again rhapidophyllum's current native range is almost identical to elliottii yet is the hardiest palm in the world. Anyone have definitive information on its hardiness?  Reason I ask is I am toying with the idea of planting a grove of loblolly, longleaf and slash to see what happens :D.

Edited by mdsonofthesouth
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Nj Palms

Pond pine is native here and I have seen groves of it.Also lobboly is native to Southern New Jersey.Heres a video:https://youtu.be/AtZ4xDanPKI

P.S Not my video

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PalmTreeDude

I think that once you start seeing native Bald Cypress, Loblolly Pines, Longleaf Pines, and Slash Pines (farther South), you know you’re in the Coastal Plain. In Virginia, you’ll see Loblollys (which also grow quite far inland, including where I am in the Richmond Area) and Bald Cypress, along with very small areas of Longleaf Pine, that are mostly conservation areas, in the Southeastern part of the state in the Coastal Plain. This continues as you go farther south. Take a look at the range of Bald Cypress, it seems to stay in the Atlantic and Gulf Coastal Plains and almost lines up perfectly with maps of them, other than in the far Northeast portion. 

 

7989F016-07E0-41EE-880A-DE00F2AD65F2.gif

Edited by PalmTreeDude
Added Image
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ahosey01

I know this isn’t super insightful with respect to the classification of these forests, but I took a camping trip to central & northwest Florida with the wife and kids a few years back.  I remember being surprised at just how much the Goethe State Forest in particular looked like the ponderosa forests north of the Mogollon rim in Arizona where I live.  The primary visual difference - aside from a different pine species - were the small palms scattered on the ground between the pines.  

This was also right after the hurricane that whomped Mexico Beach had passed through, so the humidity was low and the temps were mild.  As a result, it even felt weather-wise like I was camping in the high pines back home.  Remarkable experience and one of my favorite places I’ve ever been.

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