This book is an invaluable compilation of ecological information on 244 species of trees, shrubs, and woody vines found in the northern half of the Florida peninsula and in the Florida Panhandle. It covers the full range of native species in the region as well as common exotic plants, drawing on original experience and field research by ecologist Robert Simons.
For each species, Simons describes the plant's leaves, flowers, and fruit, geographical distribution, size, and lifespan. He also discusses its typical habitats, soil and light requirements, water needs and flooding tolerance, adaptation to fire, economic importance, and the plants, insects, and diseases most often associated with it. Notably, the book focuses on each plant's relationship with wildlife, including which species eat the fruit or foliage or pollinate the flowers. It also features an introduction to the biological communities of northern Florida and a helpful glossary of botanical terms.
The Ecology of the Trees, Shrubs, and Woody Vines of Northern Florida provides gardeners, landscapers, scientists, and students a foundational understanding of how these plants fit into the communities of organisms in which they live and how they have adapted to their place in their physical environment.
Robert W. Simons has worked for 50 years as a forester and ecologist in northern Florida. He has received many awards for environmental conservation, including Audubon Florida’s Sustainable Forestry Award.
"An excellent account of the ecology of the trees, shrubs, and woody vines of northern Florida. The information is based on a lifetime of experience studying Florida's woody plants and will be useful to foresters, biologists, students of the natural sciences, and anyone interested in the biota of the region."
– Walter Judd, author of Plant Systematics: A Phylogenetic Approach
"Simons has spent fifty years researching the literature to provide a compendium of ecological knowledge about the woody plants of the northern Florida area. He has carefully examined each plant, traveling comprehensively throughout the area, often with other experts, to record the ecology of each species he discusses."
– David W. Hall, author of Grasses of Florida