East Texas Pineywoods

From the northern edge of very urban Houston to rural Bowie County north of Texarkana runs one of the most beautiful pine forests still standing in North America. Mostly deep, dark and evergreen, it is an extension of the rich pine/hardwood forests of the southeastern United States. Patchworked with evergreen shrub bogs and cypress-tupelo swamps, this area is characterized by rolling hills of pine and oak and rich hardwood bottomlands renewed frequently by long-term flooding.

The Pineywoods is graced by 35 to 60 inches of rain per year supporting not only the pines – loblolly, shortleaf and longleaf mainly – but also a myriad of woodland specialties like sphagnum mosses, ferns, pitcher plants, sundews, pipeworts, and orchids. Streamside stands of beech, oaks, elm, and magnolia also benefit from the heavy rainfall.

East Texas boasts a rich diversity of wildlife. Fifteen species of Texas breeding birds, including the Pine Warbler, Brown-headed Nuthatch and Red-cockaded Woodpecker nest in this region. Bachman’s Sparrow nests in the longleaf pine uplands, while wintering Bald Eagles roost in undisturbed uplands near rivers and lakes. Mammals in the region include River Otter, Gray Squirrel, Flying Squirrel and even the Louisiana Black Bear.

Plants of the East Texas Pineywoods

  • Trees
    • Drummond red maple
    • River birch
    • American beech
    • Southern red oak
    • Willow oak
    • Shumard red oak
    • American elm
    • Southern sugar maple
    • Eastern redbud
    • Flowering dogwood
    • Southern magnolia
    • Eastern red cedar
    • Short-leaf pine
    • Long-leaf pine
    • Loblolly pine
  • Shrubs
    • American beautyberry
    • Buttonbush
    • Lantana
    • Wax myrtle
  • Vines
    • Cross-vine
    • Pipevine
    • Trumpet creeper
    • Carolina Jessamine
    • Coral honeysuckle
    • Virginia creeper
    • May-pop
  • Grasses
    • Big blue stem
    • Bushy bluestem
    • Broomsedge
    • Inland sea-oats
    • Canada wildrye
  • Wildflowers
    • Winecup
    • Coralbean
    • Halbert-leaf rose-mallow