Sandhills are sandy, rolling lands similar in appearance to scrub but are dominated by open stands of longleaf pines, which are among the tallest pines in Florida. The ground of sandhills is carpeted with wiregrass, ferns and many species of flowering plants, giving an open, park-like appearance. Early Florida settlers said they could go from coast to coast in a horse and wagon traveling over sandhills, which were then a very widespread plant community.
Normally sandhills burn more frequently
than scrub and therefore they have few hardwoods or shrubs such as
are common in the scrub.
Some of our most interesting wildlife such as red-cockaded woodpeckers, gopher tortoises, and gopher frogs live in sandhills.
Now, however, most sandhills have mostly been farmed, converted to citrus or developed into subdivisions, and few remain in their natural state. In some cities we still find a few longleaf pines (their huge pine cones help identify them), which lets us know what sort of plant community originally grew in those developed areas.