First, most of the trees in this area are either Live Oaks or Sabal Palms. Where the land is slightly higher, you will also find pine trees, but those are not as common. You will most likely first notice that the trees are covered with hanging Spanish Moss. As I learned this week, this is neither Spanish or moss. It is an air plant which, contrary to common belief, is native to the United States and does not kill the trees on which it lives. There is nothing so indicative of the South as live oak trees hung with Spanish Moss.
My campsite is (or was until I moved) under a live oak tree, hanging with Spanish moss:
One of the most interesting thing about the trees in this area are the number of plants living on them. This photo shows four different species living on one branch. The humidity is very high here, making it easy for such plants to survive during even the dry times.
· The white arrow points to a white lichen.
· The pink arrow points to a pink lichen.
· The blue arrow points to a mass of dried up resurrection fern.
· The blue arrow is a Cardinal air plant that will have a red flower later in the year.
Here is another photo of plants living on tree branches. Notice how tightly together they are packed. This results in a lot of biomass in a very small area.
The resurrection fern looks pretty unimpressive in the dry times of year, but as soon as it rains, it looks like this photo I found on the internet.