110 W. New York Ave.
DeLand, FL 32720
posted Dec 3, 2012 - 5:59:00am
Enjoy a green Christmas by cutting your own sand-pine at Lyonia Preserve in Deltona. You’ll not only get a unique tree, you’ll help to maintain habitat for Florida scrub jays.
While sand pines are not traditional Christmas trees, they have been popular among Floridians for decades.
These native trees have been likened to Charlie Brown Christmas trees, because they’re sparse and sometimes lopsided. Two or three can be tied together to make a fuller tree, and many people decorate them and leave them outside for wildlife. Most of the trees are 4 to 5 feet tall, but they can grow up to 20 feet.
Lyonia Preserve, adjacent to the Deltona Regional Library at 2150 Eustace Ave., is a 360-acre scrub habitat that has three nature trails. Staff and volunteers routinely remove overgrown sand pines to create bare sand areas with low-growing vegetation preferred by the Florida scrub jays and gopher tortoises that live at the preserve.
Residents can select their favorite sand pines from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday and Sunday, Dec. 15-16. Bring a saw and park along the road near the back entrance to Deltona Lakes Elementary School on Providence Boulevard.
Donations are requested, and proceeds will be used by the Friends of the Library to purchase Florida habitat books for the Deltona Regional Library.
For more information, call Bonnie Cary, environmental specialist for Volusia County, at 386-804-0437.
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