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Old 02-06-2007, 09:25 PM
 
Location: zooland 1
3,744 posts, read 3,773,933 times
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Can a texan tell me about the piney woods.. what they are like.. dry pines or wetter than other areas of texas...
During my road trip to texas this spring can anyone suggest some worthwhile towns to visit to get a fair representation of the area

thanks

cam
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Old 02-07-2007, 12:59 PM
 
Location: Anywhere but here!
2,800 posts, read 9,670,399 times
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Well, since no one else has posted for you I will give you the little bit I know.
First of all I find it kind of funny, I was on another thread with you for Start13 regarding Redding...lol. I grew up in Redding, moved to Arkansas (with parents, worst move EVER) then moved back this way when I got married and have lived in Bullhead City, AZ for amost 19 years...We are looking to move either to East Texas around the Tyler area, or possible a suburb of Dallas.
We visited Tyler back in July, it was really beautiful, but not like Redding. The whole Tyler area is very very green and lots of pines, however the area is VERY FLAT, therefore all you can see sometimes is straight ahead of you on the road and a bunch of trees. Now, being from the Arizona desert, it didn't really matter to us because we were just thrilled to actually see GREEN and TREES of any kind lol! The Piney Woods are very nice from what we got to see, it just isn't the same as Redding (it's green and trees but NO MOUNTAINS). However, we LOVED IT and will most likely end up there.
Someone on one of my posts on here told me t also look around Hill Country. I did. Hill Country is GORGEOUS. It would be great there, I think it might even have a bit on Redding lol. But no matter how beautiful it is, Hill Country is around San Antonio ans seems a little bit higher cost of living in the Hill Country for what we are wanting and San Antonio is supposedly hotter and more humid than is East Texas. Hill Country climate I believe is overall cooler and better most likely than San Antonio, but we would still have to commute to San Antonio for work. Just thought you might want to check it out there as well. There is another thread on the first page of Texas that is regarding cities and towns of Hill Country, you can look at it and get an idea where to look.
The people that I have talked to basically said if you want to see nothing but trees and the woods everywhere you look, go to East Texas. If you want a more mixed variety of oaks, maples cedars etc. and have a much better view of your surroundings look at Central Texas!
GHope this helps at least a little bit!
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Old 02-07-2007, 01:39 PM
 
Location: Texas Hill Country
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Well,even though I live in San Antonio now I do have loads of family in the East Texas area. I would start around Tyler and make sure I had Marshall on the list of towns to see, also Lufkin and Nacodogches if I had some time I would also check out the Caddo Lake area and also Uncertain and Jefferson. Perhaps make time to see Lake O the Pines and that area also. I would say that the Piney woods is slightly more humid than the Hill country, better soil for gardening also if that matters. Love all the tall Pine trees that the hill country is missing. Both areas are very pretty.
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Old 02-07-2007, 10:27 PM
 
Location: Perth, Western Australia
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Quote:
Originally Posted by notmeofficer View Post
Can a texan tell me about the piney woods.. what they are like.. dry pines or wetter than other areas of texas...
There are three native pines to the Piney Woods that I know of and one popular introduced species.

They are:

-Shortleaf Pine (Pinus Echinata)
-Loblolly Pine (Pinus Taeda)
-Longleaf Pine (Pinus Paulustrus, sp?)

and Non-Native

- Slash Pine (Pinus Elliotii)

All of these grow rapidly and have a maximum height of over 80 feet tall, with trunk diameters up to 3 feet.

Shortleaf Pine's mature bark looks like alligator hide with very thick, chunky, plate-like bark. This is an "upland species." Bright blueish-green needles about 3-5 inches long.

Loblolly Pine is the largest, record ones up to 122 feet tall and 5-6 feet in diameter. This can grow almost anywhere, including in heavy wet clay. Bright yellowish-green needles 4-8 inches long.

Longleaf Pine grows slow at first and looks like a fountain of grass with needles up to 18 inches long. As it matures, the needles look mop-like and the tree grows kind of open and airy. Bright green needles 6-12 inches long, pine cones 6-10" long. (largest pine cone in the East) Usually grows in sandy-soil and is very fire-restistant.

Slash Pine is the often the fastest growing of all southern pines. Mature trees can look like "frill-top toothpicks" as the first 4/5ths of the trunk can be bare. Bright green needles 6-10 inches long. This pine is more suseptable (sp?) to drought than the other pines, and often grows in "craw fish flats" and evenly moist forests/woodlands.

*I'm sorry, I couldn't help myself but I love talking about southern pines. I hope that answered some of your questions.

If my descriptions do interest you, I thought you might want to take a look on the internet at some photos. They're really easy to find.
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Old 02-08-2007, 12:40 AM
 
Location: zooland 1
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thanks everyone.. keep it coming,, and yes.. I have looked at some photos.. but would love to know about the communities
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Old 02-08-2007, 05:11 PM
 
112 posts, read 764,336 times
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Default Piney Woods

Quote:
Originally Posted by notmeofficer View Post
Can a texan tell me about the piney woods.. what they are like.. dry pines or wetter than other areas of texas...
During my road trip to texas this spring can anyone suggest some worthwhile towns to visit to get a fair representation of the area
cam
I'm not a resident but I was a "temporary Texan" after the hurricanes in 2005, working on debris cleanup, temporary roofing, etc. I had a chance to stay in many E Texas towns and to travel all over ... part of our job was to drive every last road in certain counties to map the debris. It was heartbreaking to see the beautiful stands of pine forests leveled by the hurricane and tornados, reduced to matchsticks in many instances.

I only have a vague recollection of the extent of the Piney Woods but I know my territory was part of it, Jefferson, Polk, Orange, Newton, Liberty Counties, etc. ... over towards Huntsville, and beyond. My favorite town of the bunch was Livingston, least favorite Vidor. A lot of the other towns and cities had less character and were more commercial centers with big box stores and so forth. Of course w all the damage, the area wasn't exactly displayed to its best advantage.

There's a beautiful natural area, The Big Thicket Preserve, run by National Park Service. I highly recommend it if you enjoy outdoor activities.
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Old 02-08-2007, 08:56 PM
 
Location: zooland 1
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this is interesting.. I didnt know the area sustained such huge damage (Katrina?)... is this an area that regularly sees large scale devastation?....
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Old 02-09-2007, 11:01 AM
 
Location: Austin, TX
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No, East Tx is generally removed from most hurricane type damage, except in extreme cases (Rita, in the 2005 case, I think). It was not widely thought newsworthy, but parts of E. Tx (exp. SE. Tx) where damaged to a comparable extent as Southern Louisanna. Anyway, I am assuming by East Tx you are referring to the more northern area. When I think of the typical Piney East Texas, I think of an area encompasses by Huntsville up through Tyler, maybe, adn across to Cartahge and down to Jasper. This is very rough, not exact by any means, but is inland and heavily wooded.

There is more rain here than areas to the west, which contributes to the pine trees success, and although the heat is no that by by 'dry bulb' temperature, it gets incredibly muggy at times due to the humidity.

Much of the industry still revolves around forest products (plywood, oriented strand board, paper, and lumber). This industry is slowly 'industrializing', so there is little in the way of job growth. There may even be a decrease in the number of wood related jobs, not sure. If you are familiar with paper mills, the ones out there are Kraft mills, so there is the potential to stink, but they have improved markedly over the last 10-20 years.

Until recently, the area had very little in the way of immigration from other parts of the country and very little overall population growth. This has resulted in a stagnation (either perceived or real). There were some race issues in specific areas, some of which probably persist. Recently, there is a growing influx of retirees...the land is cheap, it doesn't get miserably cold, and there is no state income tax. This has resulted in some changes, for better or worse, such as improving medical care and more golf courses .

Huntsville and Nacogdoches have local universities (Sam Houston and Stephen F. Austin, respectively). Sam Houston is (or used to be?) know for Criminal Justice and Radio-Television-Film, while I think forestry for SFAustin.

Just kind of rambling, hope it helps some.....
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Old 02-09-2007, 08:00 PM
 
Location: zooland 1
3,744 posts, read 3,773,933 times
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all excellent info.. many thanks everyone
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Old 02-10-2007, 09:11 AM
 
Location: a little bit of everywhere
74 posts, read 266,317 times
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Default East Texas

I live in Nacogdoches and yes we have lots of trees. The name says Pineywoods but there are plenty of hardwoods here also. My work involves working in the woods (instrument man for a surveying company) and I see plenty of oaks, sweetgums, maples, and some beeches to name a few. Where I hunt 45 miles to the west is the same. Lots of mixed pine/hardwood forests. It's pretty country.
If I remember correctly the Nacogdoches area gets about 40 to 48 inches of rain a year. However, we are in a 20 year drought cycle right now so things are a little drier. This past Janurary though we recieved 5 more inches of rain than normal. The summers here are hot and humid. That's one of the reasons my wife and I are moving to Idaho. I hope this helps.
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