In November 2020, at Bruce Beach, FMWAS planted about 150 species of native plants.
Keystone trees included Sand Live Oak, Live Oak, Myrtle Oak, Red Mulberry, and Bald Cypress to replicate their naturally occurring groves.
Native tiered under-story plants were set out with a view to create ideal habitats…shelter, protection, food…for our Florida native and migratory birds.
The view of the Board for that project was to be able to offer avian, native plant, and environmental education, demonstration, and community cooperation by focusing on “Native Trees and Plants for Native and Migratory Birds at Bruce Beach.”
Much has happened in the 3 years elapsed. Most of the keystone trees have survived but many of the understory species have withered and died.
The environment we experienced has been harsh. The soils are very sandy and poor in nutrition.
The heat of the summer sun has caused many understory plants to succumb because they really need shade to prosper.
On the positive side, there have been many volunteer hours expended at the site.
Weeds have been kept under control by manual and mechanical means, and the site looks well-kept.
Trees have been slow to get going but after 3 years, show strong signs of development.
It is important that we continue with input from our members, even though we understand the project is a long-term one.
Interpretive signs have been installed to offer information on plant types and the birds that may be associated with them in time.
Those of us intimately involved at the site, are pleased that the Longleaf Pine Chapter of the Florida Native Plant Society (FNPS) is showing an interest in working with us to continue with the management of the site, and look forward to new and additional plantings, as our trees develop, and provide shade for those new plants.
Ashley Moore of the FNPS and The Native Plant Company, Milton will be the liaison person between FMWAS and FNPS.
FMWAS personnel who are currently managing our site are Steve Coster and Judy Diaz.
We would be pleased to hear from anyone out there who would like to become involved. There is a lot to do!
Find out how you can help: When contacting us please provide your name and reason for the email.