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Steve Nix

Atlantic Dune Woodlands and Maritime Uplands Ecosystem

By January 16, 2013

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Rare Pignut Hickory in Maritime Forest

Rare Pignut Hickory in Maritime Forest - Photo by Steve Nix

Most of the Atlantic and Gulf coast is bordered by a "sand strand". The profile of this border is a landscape starting at the sea's edge and developing inland from beach to dunes to zones of woody vegetation called the "dwarf maritime forest". As the name suggests, there can be stunted tree growth due to the harsh conditions that trees constantly undergo surviving severe weather, salt and poor soil.

Atlantic maritime dune woodlands and maritime uplands are an overlooked, misunderstood forest community and under significant threat from both natural and man-made causes. Maritime dune forests are composed of deciduous, coniferous, and broadleaf evergreen trees. These trees include live oak, sabel palm , magnolia, holly, loblolly pine and a rare pignut hickory at Nags Head Woods.

Nags Head Woods is one exception to the idea of an upland ancient dune being stressed. Find out more about our beautiful maritime forests and especially the Nature Conservancy's Nags Head Woods Ecological Preserve.


July 26, 2010 at 1:06 am
(1) Steve in Weaverville, NC says:

Always enjoy your newsletter – the pictures of the Kilmer Forest were terrific

July 26, 2010 at 12:24 pm
(2) P-A-McGoldrick says:

Hello Steve,

So glad you shared the Trees poem! I was working on some projects lately when I recalled the poem but could not remember the poet’s name.
Trees are poetry to me! They have always been a big part of my life. When my Dad was alive, he could identify so many trees, knew so many facts about them. Your website about trees answers so many questions when I need to know about a tree. Great work!

(Oops–As a blogger, I noticed a typo in your title? Should it read Atlantic?)


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