The photo above was taken at the
abandoned town site of Old Bluffport, owned by the Sumter County Nature
Trust. Throughout the Blackbelt, many exposed chalk outcroppings occur
that contain native plant species not found in the lower elevations.
Lower “Blackland” elevation soils are generally thicker, while upper
chalky soils are thin to non-existent. Native plant species may have
survived here due to the lack of plowing, but experts think the poor
soil and harsh conditions will not allow introduced plants to survive.
Native prairie plants have existed in this harsh environment for
millennia and have adapted to the local conditions. These chalk prairie
remnants could be an important “wildflower refugia”; a site where native
plants can survive and flourish.
Photo taken by: Robby Limerick