Residents and visitors alike recognize the Plantation as a special balance of nature, wildlife, and pristine beaches. Owners have a strong commitment to preserving and nurturing the habitat. In 2011, the board approved a master landscaping plan, designed for conservation and sustainability. It incorporates principles of the Florida Friendly Landscaping Program which outlines ways to encourage better planting, renovating, and landscaping. Since then we have won numerous awards for our efforts.
Find Native Plants
Plants of the Plantation
Coastal Dune Plants
On a barrier island like St. George, dune rehabilitation and preservation are a major concern of conservationists. Native plants, well adapted to flourish in the otherwise hostile dune environment, rebound quickly following severe storms. Common pioneer species that take root in our dunes include Sea Oats (below left), Bluestem (below middle) and Beach Morning Glory (below right). Sea Oats and Bluestem, with their long vertical roots, help hold sand and grow vertically quickly, giving them the advantage of being buried by growing dunes. Their drought tolerance makes them highly desirable. Ground cover species such as Morning Glory, Sea Purslane, Railroad Vine, and ironically, even the thorny Smilax, create horizontal tangles that help hold sand in place. Large, tall, and older dunes typically will show a diverse flora, sometimes as many as 15 or more species, including sand live oaks. The diversity results as later colonizing species take over from the pioneer species.
As you bike, hike the byways or walk the paved paths, you’ll notice the natural beauty around us. The Plantation features stands of slash pine trees once used for gathering sap to make turpentine. We still see evidence of this practice on some trees. Use the 1.5 mile loop map or the shorter walking tour of the Turpentine History Trail to see these for yourself.
Underneath the pines, sawtooth palmettos form a dense layer. It’s easy to see where they got their name if you examine their leaves at close range. Along the edges of the bike paths and walkways, you may spot plants such as lantana. Next time you’re out and about, take along our map highlighting the various plant locations for a self-guided tour.