One little gem of a park here in Pompano is called "Crystal Lake Sand Pine Scrub Natural Area". Yes, very convoluted name though extremely simple by nature. So many people drive right past it, never stopping to experience something new. Consider this if you will...a lunch time break to ease your mind and walk along a meandering path of nature and fresh air. So here are a few pictures of our sand pine scrub walkabout last evening.
|Crystal Lake Sand Pine Scrub Natural Area|
This sign greets you at the entrance
|Just in case if you didn't know already|
|This native wildflower, Puncture Weed, has a|
sprawling growth pattern along the sandy ground.
The butterflies love the yellow buttercup flowers.
|Puncture weed, tribulus cistoides, or Burnut|
is a dainty looking plant but be careful because
like it's name it has sharp thorns on it.
|The sun was setting in the west as we walked|
about the nature trail. This kind of light really
brings out all the colors in the landscape.
|This picture reminds me of the old Florida|
landscape painters. When they would bring all their
materials with them and paint in the native surroundings.
|When we were young, I remember my brother|
& his friend ate these Abrus seeds despite being
warned numerous times they are poisonous!
They had to have their stomach's pumped since the
seed contains a deadly toxin called abrin. One seed can
kill a human but birds seem unaffected, go figure.
|Abrus or Rosary Pea, abrus precatorius, are a non-native vine that grows in Florida's woodlands. The hard seeds are bright red with a black spot as a warning...do not eat! If you haven't seen these in the wild then you may have seen jewelry made from these.|
|Gopher tortoise's love eating the fruit from|
these prickly pear cactus. The fruit can
also be made into jellies & jams, delicious!
|This is a nice composition of the pineland part of|
a scrub area. The pine trees are the large trees in a scrub
environment providing shade for understory shrubs.
|Which way do we go???|
|We went this way :)|
|To the left of the pictures is a Sand Pine, in the|
middle is a Saw Palmetto Palm, the right is a
Sand Live Oak covered in Lovevine. The foreground
is Gopher Apple, & Wild leaf October flowers.
|A close up of some of the ground plants: Wild Leaf October flowers, Gopher Apple, all covered in Lovevine,|
|Sand Pine with pine cones all over|
|Close up of a Sand Pine tree|
|Florida Rosemary with a Greenbrier vine|
growing over it.
|I tried to get a good picture but to no avail though this is a 7-minute-itch plant or Tread-Softly, is covered in small hairs that pack a stinging punch, so don't pick the flowers here, lol|
|We saw & heard the Kestral, WOW!|
Plus lots of butterflies
|Some of the native plants I have mentioned in the previous pictures. These informative signs are throughout the path.|
|I have no idea what these plants are but|
apparently they were in bloom & everywhere.
|I just love this picture with all the different colors|
textures and layers of plants. Just wish we had a
better camera to take vividly clear pictures. :)
|The only reason why I spotted this little beauty |
of an airplant tucked down in an oak is because of
the bright red, orange & yellow spikey bloom.
|This an oak covered in lichen & what is called ball moss, which is really a type of airplant. These plants aren't harmful to oaks but are part of it's ecosystem.|
|All good things must come to an end, these|
trees have become termite delicacy.
|Ant mounds, just how cool is that!|
|Love these Sand Pine trees, the way the|
wind blows through the needles makes a
peaceful shwoooosh sound
|What a gorgeous day to be out in|
nature, exploring our counties parks
right in our own backyards.
|If you didn't know what these little puff|
balls are you would probably never notice them.
This is deer moss which is part of the lichen family.
|A closer look at deer moss, they are extremely slow|
growing. A small patch like this probably took decades, so let's leave them for the deer to eat.
|A beautiful little pot-bellied airplant growing|
in an oak with it's bright red bloom.
|Saw Palmetto & Oak tree.|
Lichen growing all over the oak.
|Another captured moment in time.|
Love the composition of this picture.
|Moss & Lichen cover Oak tree trunks.|
|Looking to the sky with wonder & amazement|
|Up in the Myrtle Oak is a beautiful |
GiantWild Pine Airplant
|This picture of another giant wild pine|
airplant looks like it could be in the mangroves
|Absolutely stunning color orange of this fungus|
growing on a dead oak branch on the forest floor.
Well this concludes our little tour of one of Broward Counties parks, aka protected scrub land area. This is a little peak of what some areas of Florida would look like if we never stepped foot here to develop our malls & houses. Hope you enjoyed a little bit of Florida's natural flora and fauna in the scrub land of Pompano Beach.
Now get out there, enjoy the gorgeous weather we are having & plant some native species! :)