A Guide to Natural History of Flora for the Floyd County, Northwest Georgia,
Southeastern United States

by Zvezdana Ukropina-Crawford

© Image Copyright: Claude E. Phillips Herbarium at Delaware State University, Dover, Delaware

William M. Canby (1831-1904), a plant collector, botanist, and businessman from Delaware (on the left), and Charles S. Sargent (1841-1927), a founder and director of the Arnold Arboretum at Harvard, Massachusetts in undated photo (1890'), courtesy of Claude E. Phillips Herbarium at Delaware State University, Dover, Delaware.
In October of 1898 Canby and Sargent traveled in company of John Muir (1838-1914) , a famous conservationist, and they visited Rome and botanized in the Floyd County. Charles S. Sargent made two more trips to the Floyd County in 1899 and in 1900.
Philadelphus spp. L., Mock Orange at a bank of the Coosa River, Floyd County, Georgia, Apr. 30, 2008.

In the late nineteenth century Alvin (Alvan) W. Chapman, a botanist from Florida discovered some new plant species in the Floyd County. Chauncey D. Beadle, a botanist from North Carolina and Charles S. Sargent, collected in the Floyd County and published new species of Crataegus spp. L., Hawthorns in the late 1890ís. These findings made Rome and the surrounding area well-known botanical sites in the scientific world. Early collections of the new plant species from the Floyd County have been deposited in the herbariums of: The University of North Carolina; Auburn University; Harvard University; The Smithsonian Institutions; Missouri Botanical Garden; New York Botanical Garden; Field Museum of Natural History, and The University of Georgia.

NEW PLANT SPECIES DISCOVERED IN THE FLOYD COUNTY, GEORGIA

Aureolaria patula (Chapman) Pennell, Spreading Yellow Foxglove, Solidago flaccidifolia Small, Mountain Goldenrod Scutellaria incana Biehler var. punctata (Chapman) C. Mohr, Dotted Skullcap, Scutellaria montana Chapm., Large-Flowered Skullcap,
Ilex longipes Chapman ex Trel., Georgia Holly Philadelphus floridus Beadle, Florida Mock Orange Viburnum bracteatum Rehder, Limerock Arrow-Wood Crataegus aemula Beadle, Rome Hawthorn
Crataegus iracunda Beadle, Stolonbearing Hawthorn Crataegus sargenti Beadle, Sargent's Hawthorn Crataegus tristis Beadle, Minute Hawthorn Crataegus triflora Chapm., Three-Flower Hawthorn
Cryphaea ravenelii Aust., Ravenel's Cryphaea Moss Isoetes appalachiana D.F. Brunton & D.M. Britton), Appalachian Quillwort Synonyms

BOTANICAL SITES IN THE FLOYD COUNTY, GEORGIA

THE OOSTANAULA RIVER VALLEY

Site: Unusual plants: Contact information:
Pocket Area, ridges of the Horn Mountain, Chattahoochee National Forest Castanea dentata (Marsh) Borkh., American Chestnut; Ilex longipes 3"> USDA Forest Service, Conasauga Ranger District
Jeff Gardner - District Ranger
Tel.(706) 695-6736
Whitmore's Bluff, limestone cliffs over the Oostanaula River Trillium lancifolium Raf. , Philadelphus spp. L., Mock-Orange; Crataegus triflora Chapm., Three-Flower Hawthorn Private property
Oak Hill, The Berry College Campus cultivated woody plants Berry College, Mt. Berry, Georgia;
oakhill@berry.edu;
Tel. (706) 291-1883
Flatwoods and Lavender Mountain at the Berry College Campus Crataegus iracunda Beadle, Stolonbearing Hawthorn, Polygonatum biflorum (Walt.) Ell. (var., Smooth Solomon's Seal, Scutellaria ovata Hill ssp. ovata, Heartleaf Skullcap, Marshallia mohrii Beadle & F.E. Boynt, Coosa Barbara Buttons., Asclepias purpurascens L., Purple Milkweed, Asclepias amplexicaulis Sm., Curly Milkweed, Cirsium carolinianum (Walt) Fern&Schub., Purple Thisle, Platanthera ciliaris (L.) Lindl., Yellow fringed orchid, Pinus palustris P. Miller, Longleaf Pine, Carya myristicaeformis Nutt., Nutmeg Hickory 1. Berry College, Mt. Berry, Georgia
Tel. (706) 232-5374
2. DNR Wildlife Management
Berry College
Tel. (706) 295-6041

THE ETOWAH RIVER VALLEY

Site: Unusual plants: Contact information:
Silver Creek area,
South Rome
Crataegus tristis Beadle, Minute Hawthorn, Crataegus spp., Hawthorns City of Rome;
Eric Lindberg,
elindberg@romega.us; Tel. (706) 236-5025

THE COOSA RIVER VALLEY

Site: Unusual plants: Contact information:
Park of the Myrtle Hill Cemetery , Rome Ulmus serotina Sargent, September Elm City of Rome;
Eric Lindberg
elindberg@romega.us; Tel. (706) 236-5025
The Marshall Forest Preserve, a National Natural Landmark, Rome virgin forest, some rare plants The Nature Conservancy in Georgia; Office in Rome, Katie Owens,
Tel. (706) 234-1404
The Black's Bluff Preserve, 500 million year old limestone cliffs over-looking Coosa River Crataegus triflora Chapm., Three-Flower Hawthorn; Viburnum bracteatum Rehder, Limerock Arrow-wood; Arabis georgiana Harper, Georgia Rock-Cress The Nature Conservancy in Georgia; Office in Rome
Tel. (706) 234-1404
Lock and Dam Park at Coosa River Nature Center Crataegus triflora Chapm., Three-Flower Hawthorn; Neviusia alabamensis Gray, Alabama Snow-Wreath City of Rome;
Eric Lindberg,
elindberg@romega.us; Tel. (706) 236-5025
The Coosa Valley Prairies , Flatwoods near Cave Spring Helianthus verticillatus Small, Whorled Sunflower; Marshallia mohrii Beadle & F.E. Boynt, Coosa Barbara Buttons.; Crataegus aemula Beadle, Rome's Hawthorn ; rare plant species The Campbell Group, LLC
John King
jking@campbellgroup.com
Tel.(256) 927-1522; Fax:(256) 927-1525
McGee Bend Site Crataegus sargenti Beadle, Sargent's Hawthorn  


ABOUT THE FLOYD COUNTY, GEORGIA

City of Rome, a view from Myrtle Hill Cemetery (September 04, 2009.)

LOCATION: Floyd County is in Northwest Georgia (34o16' N and 85o13' W) and it covers 1.329 square kilometers (514 square miles). Its boundaries are: the Chattahoochee National Forest and county line of Walker on the north, Gordon County and Bartow County on the east, Polk County on the south, and on the west is Chattooga County and Cherokee County in Alabama and Alabamaís state line.

GEOLOGY: The geological regions of Northwest Georgia are: Cumberland Plateau, Chickamauga Valley, Armuchee Ridges, and Great Valley. The Chickamauga Valley, Armuchee Ridges and Great Valley are known as the Ridge and Valley Province, and Floyd County is part of that province. To the east, of the Great Valley the Cartersville-Great Smoky fault line separates the sedimentary rocks of the Ridge and Valley region from the younger metamorphic rocks of the Blue Ridge Mountains. Deep sediments of sandstone, shale, and limestone, laid down 300-600 million years ago, as well as fossils of marine invertebrates, are reminders that this area was covered by a shallow sea during the Paleozoic Era. The collision of the Proto-Africa continent with the Proto-North America continent faulted and folded those sediments, and millions of years of erosion formed them into the long northeast-southwest-trending valleys and ridges of the Ridge and Valley Province.

MOUNTAINS: The highest mountain, in Floyd County is Lavender Mountain on the Berry College Campus, rising 517 m above sea level. John's Mountain and Turkey Mountain are in the northern part of the county near Floyd Springs. Turnip Mountain and Heath (Judy) Mountain are southwest of Lavender Mountain. Horseleg Mountain or Mt. Alto is southwest of Rome, and Tubbs Mountain is in East Rome. Simms Mountain is in the northwest, and Rock Mountain is between Big Texas Valley and Little Texas Valley. Finally, Armstrong Mountain is on the northeast between Pinson and Hermitage.

VALLEYS: The Great Valley spreads through northwest Georgia from Tennessee and into Alabama. Its boundaries on the west are the Armuchee Ridges and on the east the Great Smoky- Cartersville Fault. It is 17-28 miles (28-46 km) broad. The valleys of the Oostanaula, Etowah, and Coosa rivers are in the Great Valley. Big Texas Valley, 11 miles (18.5 km) long, is between two Armuchee Ridges, Simms Mountain and Rock Mountain. Little Texas Valley is 14 miles (22 km) long and it is between Rock Mountain, Armuchee and Lavender Mountain. Ridge Valley spreads northeast from Rome to Plainville in Gordon County at the edge of Armstrong Mountain, and it is 14 miles (22 km) long. Vannís Valley begins 2.2 miles (3.7 km) south of Cave Spring and extends 11 miles (18.5 km) to northeast.

RIVERS: On the west side of downtown Rome, at the foothill of the Myrtle Hill, the Oostanaula and the Etowah Rivers combine to form the Coosa River. In the past, Native Americans called the conjugation of these three rivers, "The Head of Coosa.". The Oostanaula River, once translated as "mother of waters," flows through the Great Valley from the north with the waters of the Conasauga and Coosawattee Rivers. It is 45 miles (72 km) long. The Conasauga River carries waters from the high mountainous region of the Cohutta Wilderness near the Georgia -Tennessee border. The Coosawattee River drains the waters of the Blue Ridge province of Northeast Georgia, and, at Calhoun, joins the Conasauga River to form the Oostanaula River. The Etowah River, a "muddy bottom," is 141 miles (227 km) long. It rises in the Blue Ridge Mountains of north Georgia and enters Floyd County from the east.
The Coosa River, a "rippling water", flows to the southwest to Alabama, and there, after 286 miles (460 km), joins the waters of the Tallapoosa to form the Alabama River and eventually finds its way to the Gulf of Mexico.

INHABITANTS: The first inhabitants, the Paleoindian hunters, arrived in North Georgia over 9,000 years ago. Artifacts of their culture, distinctive arrowheads, were scattered throughout the region. Ceramic artifacts found in Cartersville, Georgia tell the story of the archaic Woodland culture of the Native Americans that lived there 3,000 years ago. King Site is an archeological site of a mid-sixteenth century town built by Mississippian Native Americans on the banks of the Coosa River in Floyd County . When the first Scottish traders, came in the late sixteenth century, the Creek tribes lived here. Later they were replaced by Cherokee tribes. After the land lottery of the Cherokee lands in 1832 Floyd County was established. The Cherokee Nation was relocated to Oklahoma in 1836. They were replaced by White settlers and African-Americans.


ACNOWLEDGMENT:

Dr. Susan E. Yost, Educator at Claude E. Phillips Herbarium, Delaware State University, Dover, Delaware took the time and effort to contribute this image of William M. Canby and Charles S. Sargent. June 2009.

References:
1. Battey, George Magruder, Jr. A history of Rome and Floyd County : State of Georgia, United States of America ; including numerous incidents of more than local interest, 1540-1922 Atlanta : Cherokee Publishing Company, ed. 1969. 2. Image taken by Zvezdana Ukropina-Crawford, September 04. 2009.

Note: Presently, Zvezdana Ukropina-Crawford lives in Athens, Georgia.

Last updated on July 9, 2014.
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INTRODUCTION: COLLECTIONS FROM FLOYD COUNTY :
PLANT EXPLORERS IN FLOYD COUNTY (1540-2006) TYPE SPECIMENS (1871-1902)
A.W. CHAPMAN LIST OF PLANTS (1872, 1881, & 1891)
FLATWOODS: FLOYD COUNTY OTHER SPECIMENS (1869-1970's)
WOODY SPECIMENS (1977)
HAWTHORNS: TYPE SPECIMENS (1897-1910)

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© Copyright Zvezdana Ukropina-Crawford! 1999-2014.,
Athens, Georgia, U.S.A.