West Gulf Coastal Plain Upland Longleaf Pine Forest and Woodland (Not Mapped)

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Nature Serve ID: CES 203.293


Found on sedimentary Pleistocene formations (particularly the Bentley formation), to formations of the Tertiary period (particularly the Catahoula and Wilcox formations). Historically, this system was more widely distributed on older, more inland formations of the Eocene and Paleocene epochs.


Occupying topography ranging from rolling uplands, to hills and ridges such as those associated with the Kisatchie Wold (or Kisatche Cuesta) and the Sabine Uplift.


Usually associated with coarse textured, well-drained, ultisols and alfisols, including loams, sandy loams, loamy sands, and sands, though occurrences may also be found to lesser extent on tighter soils such as clay loams.

Parent Description

This system once occupied extensive areas of east Texas, but is presently limited in extent and difficult to map using remote-sensing. Small remnants of this once extensive forest type are encountered in Angelina, Jasper, Newton, and other nearby counties in Texas. We did not attempt to map it, and chose to include any occurrences of this system in the West Gulf Coastal Plain Pine-Hardwood Forest. It was characterized by relatively open-canopied woodlands dominated by Pinus palustris (longleaf pine) with an herbaceous layer often dominated by graminoids. It often occupied gently rolling uplands with coarse-textured, well- drained soils. Pinus echinata (shortleaf pine) may be a significant component of some of the stands. Quercus stellata (post oak), Quercus marilandica (blackjack oak), Quercus incana (bluejack oak), Pinus taeda (loblolly pine), Liquidambar styraciflua (sweetgum), and Nyssa sylvatica (blackgum) may also be common components of the canopy or subcanopy. Occurrences that are less frequently burned may develop a significant shrub layer with species including Callicarpa americana (American beautyberry), Vaccinium arboreum (farkleberry), Vaccinium stamineum (deerberry), Morella cerifera (wax-myrtle), Ilex vomitoria (yaupon), Rhus copallinum (flameleaf sumac), and Toxicodendron radicans (poison ivy). Instances with a more optimal fire return interval will retain a more open understory with a grassy aspect. The herbaceous layer is often dominated by grass species such as Schizachyrium scoparium (little bluestem), Schizachyrium tenerum (slender bluestem), Sporobolus junceus (pineywoods dropseed), Nassella leucotricha (Texas wintergrass), Andropogon ternarius (splitbeard bluestem), Dichanthelium spp. (rosette grasses), Andropogon virginicus (broomsedge bluestem). Pteridium aquilinum (brackenfern) may be locally abundant, forming a continuous ground cover. Forbs may be diverse in the herbaceous layer, including species such as Pityopsis graminifolia (narrowleaf silkgrass), Solidago odora (fragrant goldenrod), Tephrosia spp. (tephrosias), Euphorbia corollata (flowering spurge), Croton argyranthemus (silverleaf croton), Vernonia texana (Texas ironweed), Alophia drummondii (celestials), Lespedeza virginica (slender lespedeza), Aristolochia reticulata (netleaf pipevine), Rhynchosia reniformis (kidneyleaf snoutbean), Stylosanthes biflora (pencilflower), Liatris elegans (pink-scale gayfeather). With prolonged absence of fire, hardwoods and Pinus taeda (loblolly pine) may come to dominate the system.

Ecological Mapping Systems