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Big Thicket Plant Ecology

An Introduction, Third Edition

Geraldine Ellis Watson

Publication Year: 2006

Originally published in 1979, Geraldine Ellis Watson’s Big Thicket Plant Ecology is now back in print. This updated edition explores the plant biology, ecology, geology, and environmental regions of the Big Thicket National Preserve. After decades of research on the Big Thicket, Watson concluded that the Big Thicket was unique for its biological diversity, due mainly to interactions of geology and climate. A visitor in the Big Thicket could look in four different directions from one spot and view scenes typical of the Appalachians, the Florida Everglades, a southwestern desert, or the pine barrens of the Carolinas. Watson covers the ecological and geological history of the Big Thicket and introduces its plant life, from longleaf pines and tupelo swamps to savannah wetlands and hardwood flats. “This is the work on the plant biology of the Big Thicket.”—Pete A.Y. Gunter, author of The Big Thicket

Published by: University of North Texas Press

Series: Temple Big Thicket Series

Half title

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Publishers page

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pp. iii-iv

List of Illustrations

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pp. v-vi

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pp. vii-x

This book is the result of a lifetime spent in Big Thicket country and of close observation and appreciation of its plant and animal life. It is written in a non-technical style for the benefit of the many nonprofessional persons interested in the general nature of the Big Thicket. The description of plant associations given in this work is based ...

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Chapter 1 Key to Understanding

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pp. 1-9

Few areas in the United States have inspired such claim and acclaim as the Big Thicket of Southeast Texas; and seldom are such claims so controversial and so contradictory. While the controversies can generally be laid at the feet of those who want to use all its natural resources for personal and corporate profits, contradictions come from reliable, well-intentioned sources as well. Considering the complex ...

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Chapter 2 The Ecological Big Thicket

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pp. 11-69

The Ecological Big Thicket occupies a tilted topographical basin in the middle Neches River watershed. It is young in age by geological time. Its surface formations were deposited in the Pleistocene and Holocene epochs of the past few millions of years. There were four major glacial stages during the Pleistocene epoch and, as the great ...

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Chapter 3 The National Preserve

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pp. 71-113

The 3.5 million acres of Big Thicket country are laced with roads and dotted with cities, villages, and farms (see map 1). Much of it has been bulldozed to bare dirt and planted with pine farms or has been altered so radically that little is left that could qualify for preservation. Also, the economy of Southeast Texas is wholly dependent on forest products and taking a too-large portion ...

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Chapter 4 Man in the Big Thicket

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pp. 115-118

Evidence shows that humans have been in this area for at least ten thousand years, possibly much longer. The aborigines were hunters and gatherers and practiced agriculture. Many habitation sites can be found above flood levels and near good water. ...


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pp. 119-122


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pp. 123-136

E-ISBN-13: 9781574414851
Print-ISBN-13: 9781574412147

Page Count: 152
Illustrations: 20 b&w illus. 8 figs. 15 maps.
Publication Year: 2006

Series Title: Temple Big Thicket Series