Florida’s desert, the scrub, forms on well-drained, loose “sugar sand,” deposited along ancient shorelines. They are thought to be Florida’s oldest plant communities, in existence for more than twenty million years. A limited number of plants tolerate the extreme dryness of the scrub environment.
In a sand pine scrub, tall sand pines dominate the forest, with an understory of oak scrub, rosemary scrub, and saw or scrub palmetto.
A rosemary scrub is an unusual place, where rosemary bushes up to eight feet tall grow out of a white sand base; the ground may be covered in lichens.
Oak scrub is dominated by sand live oak, wax myrtle, Chapman oak, and myrtle oak, with the highest diversity of scrub plant and animal life found in this habitat.