Habitat Restoration Research
Fire suppression – the act of preventing naturally occurring fires – has fundamentally altered the ecosystem of Florida's coastal wetlands. What was once seepage slopes and wet prairies comprised of herbaceous ground layer with rare carnivorous plants is now dominated by dense, impassible forest stands dominated by shrubby trees.
This overgrown woody vegetation that has plagued both coastal wetlands and dune lake watersheds has inhibited species diversity and ecological function in these important ecosystems.
The Garden and its conservation partners aim to restore these environments through evaluation, prescribed fires and the reintroduction of rare plant species.