275 pages, 260 col photos, 3 maps
Along the San Marcos River, in and surrounding Palmetto State Park in south central Texas, lie more than five square kilometers of relict ecosystem known as the Ottine Wetlands. A lowland counterpart of the Lost Pines, this rich and fascinating area of swamps, marshes, and ponds is situated on the 98th meridian-the biogeographical divide separating the eastern plants and animals of the United States from their western counterparts-and also along a similar ecological boundary separating subtropical species from their more northern, temperate counterparts. A companion to the authors' Invertebrates of Central Texas Wetlands, this volume describes the plants of this important but little-studied region. The authors have catalogued more than 500 species, ranging from mosses and liverworts to flowering plants, gleaned from published and unpublished reports, collection records, and their own extensive exploration of the park and surrounding private properties. Photographs and detailed descriptions of more than 275 species aid in field recognition; for those species not treated in the text, checklists are provided. An in-depth introductory chapter covers the region's geology and soils, climate, postglacial history, plant communities, and biogeography and also serves as a guide to Palmetto State Park and its easily accessible nature.
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