Steve Church Endangered Species Garden
Explore the map by clicking the numbers below.
Please see this map to locate the Endangered Species Garden in the context of the Blomquist and Duke Gardens.
Native to the Sand Pine scrublands of central Florida, pygmy fringetree faces a number of threats to its survival. Now found in only eight Florida counties, it has suffered from Florida’s rapid residential housing growth as well as the increase in land used for citrus production. A ﬁre dependent species, pygmy fringetree also needs periodic wildﬁres to remove competing vegetation from its native habitat. Widespread ﬁre suppression efforts have created forests where this shade-intolerant plant cannot survive.
Mohr’s Barbara’s Buttons
Once native to wet meadows and woodland openings across the lower southern U.S., Mohr’s Barbara’s buttons are currently known to exist in only a small number of counties in Georgia and Alabama. Agricultural development, road expansion and road maintenance are thought to be the main reasons for the decline of this species.
Once described as one of the most rare shrubs in the United States, Alabama croton is found only in two counties in Alabama. It was also found in Tennessee in the past, but it has not been found there for many years and is considered extinct in the state. Genetic isolation is the primary threat to the species, with small, isolated populations making pollination difficult if not impossible.
TN Possibly Extirpated, Endangered
Endemic to a 40-mile section along the Apalachicola River in northern Florida and southern Georgia, this very rare evergreen conifer can be found in shady, cool ravines called steepheads. Florida nutmeg’s primary threat comes from fungal pathogens. Infected trees can die back completely before reaching flowering age, thus making reproduction in affected populations difficult if not impossible.
Native to bogs, streamsides and wet meadows from Maine to Georgia, Canadian burnet is threatened or endangered in over half of its range. Conversion of its wet meadow habitat to agriculture and increased competition from other species due to fire suppression are some of the major threats to this plant.
GA Threatened; TN, KY Endangered
Currently found in a small number of Georgia counties dotted throughout the piedmont and coastal plain, dissected beardtongue is known from only 21 small sites. Suppression of natural fires throughout its small range has allowed other species to encroach on its typical habitat.
Once native to wet bogs and savannas from North Carolina to Florida, Cooley’s meadow-rue is now known to exist in only four counties in eastern N.C. and one county in Florida. Agricultural development and timber operations are the main factors in the continuing decline of its populations.
Native to rich woods in the southern Appalachian mountains of Georgia, North Carolina, Tennessee and South Carolina, broadleaf tickseed has suffered from timbering practices, road widening and conversion of forest to agriculture.
Once native throughout the eastern half of the United States, common pricklyash has seen its populations in a number of southern states decline significantly. Known as a plant of both medicinal and culinary interest, it is critically imperiled in Florida, Georgia and Alabama due to timbering, agricultural development and wild collection.
FL Endangered; TN Special Concern
Known from just a few sites in six southeastern states, Virginia spiraea has suffered from alterations to its typical wetland habitats. Dependent on periodic flooding to reduce competition from other species, it has been severely impacted by the construction of dams along rivers in its habitat.
NC, TN Endangered
Piedmont Barren Strawberry
Endemic to the Piedmont and Blue Ridge mountains of Georgia and South Carolina, Piedmont barren strawberry exists on only 20 sites, predominantly in Georgia. Found on steep, acidic slopes among Rhododendron and Mountain Laurel, it has suffered mostly from logging in its native range.
Large Flowered Skullcap
Native to rocky woodland soils in west Georgia and east Tennessee, large flowered skullcap has suffered from logging, grazing and residential development activites. Although its numbers are on the rise due to an increase in the number of protected sites, the majority of its specimens are still found on land with no protective status.
Federally Threatened GA; TN Endangered
Queen of the Prairie
Endangered or threatened in over a third of its native range, queen of the prairie has suffered from genetic isolation and the loss of its wet meadow habitat. Populations in many southern states are thought to be sterile due to separation from other individuals, making their survival in the South an even greater challenge.
Native to the piedmont prairie ecosystem, Schweinitz’s sunflower is currently known from only 10 populations in North Carolina and six in South Carolina. Fire suppression is the main reason behind the decline of the piedmont prairie and, by extension, this sunflower.
Miccosukee gooseberry is currently known from two counties in Florida and one in South Carolina. These populations, due to their genetic isolation, are highly vulnerable to any sort of disturbance. Relics from a Pleistocene forest, these two populations represent all that remain of a once broad range for this species.
Federally Threatened; FL Endangered
Found in granite outcrops in a small area in the lower piedmont region of Georgia, hairy rattleweed has suffered from the conversion of its native habitat to pine plantations. Fire suppression in these areas has also contributed to the decline of the species.
One of the more rare wildflowers in the country, Tennessee Coneflower was the second plant listed by the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service as endangered, in 1979. Native to a very small area near Nashville, Tenn., Echinacea tennesseensis has suffered greatly from suburban sprawl.
A relic of the Post Oak prairies that existed in the Southeast prior to large-scale fire suppression, Georgia aster is now limited to sites along woodland borders and roadsides. Road development and expansion, as well as woody plant succession as a result of fire suppression, are some of the major threats to the survival of this species.
Limited to 16 sites in six states in the southeast and south central U.S., where it can be encountered on steep limestone slopes, Alabama snow-wreath is thought to be an ancient relic species that has survived a number of geological and climate changes to find refuge in its current isolated habitats. Genetic isolation is the primary threat to its survival.
AK, GA, TN Threatened
Once native to the inner coastal plain and lower piedmont region from Virginia to Florida, Michaux’s sumac now appears sporadically in five southeastern states but only has truly viable populations in two North Carolina counties. Fire suppression, genetic isolation of small colonies and roadside clearing are some of the major threats to this species' survival.