North Garden Prickly Pear Habitat

Approximation #1

Lat/Long.: 37.9322, -78.6489
Elevation: 800'
Aspect: Southeast facing, sparse woods.
Soils: Soil/silt trapped in small cracks in the granulite outcrop provide the nutrients needed.
Bedrock: Blue Ridge basement complex. Biotite-Muscovite Leucogranite Gneiss, Grenville-age rocks (1-1.1 billion years old). note: there is a seam of Meta-gabbro very nearby; it is an ultra-mafic rock, and is the same outcrop that provides the substrate at UVA in Charlottesville.
Conditions: drought conditions have persisted for over a month. The summer saw 69 days with 90-degree-or-higher temperatures. Since August 1st, we have received not more than 1 inch of rain.

Trees and shrubs:
  • mockernut hickory
  • pignut hickory
  • chestnut oak
  • shortleaf pine
  • eastern red cedar
  • black locust
  • pawlonia
  • ailanthus
  • Virginia pine
  • black cherry
  • redbud
  • dogwood
  • serviceberry
  • huckleberry species
***Abundant saplings of redbud, chestnut oak, ailanthus, and cedar.

Other plants:
  • Eastern prickly pear

  • a woody tick trefoil species
  • raspberry species
  • Eupatorium species