Let's go west on a county road near PFHQ. This road cuts through cattle ranches, hay fields, and planted pine forests on it's way to the Gulf.
This is a likely suspect, an active rock quarry. A small quarry like this is probably mining rock for local use. Most of the dirt roads in this county are actually lime rock roads. The rock is ground up and graded over the top to make the sandy road bed more stable.
You can walk one of these roads after a rain and pick up 5 million year old sea biscuit fossils and other goodies depending on the strata that was mined.
This was last weekend so the equipment is resting.
Larger mines exist regionally and they pull huge amounts of limerock out for the production of cement. It's a matter of balance like everything else. We need cement and it's made from limerock so we need limerock quarries. Here in the world's largest concentration of first magnitude springs (1 million gallons per day), we are pretty sensitive to mine location as they have the potential to disrupt our (your) springs if they are too close, too deep, etc.
When a quarry site is finished, they have good wildlife habitat potential. There are some important migratory waterfowl sites and fish management areas in Florida that began as surface mines.
At PFHQ, I can dig down through 4 feet of sand in my northeast corner and hit limerock. I've actually mined some of my own with shovel, pick, wedges, and sledge. Slow going though ... I kept getting distracted by crab, sand dollar, and conch fossils.
Never send a nerd to do a miner's job.
This was a neat find.
There was a sign along the road that said "North Florida Palms". I looked for a website to give them a little plug here, but didn't find one. The photo only shows a small section of a huge hayfield that has been converted to a palm plantation for landscape sales ... probably wholesale to other nurseries.
I did find this website while looking and it lists some cold hardy palms for our region.
The thing that tickled me is the last line on the website:
"There are other cold hardy palms and several marginally hardy ones that can grow in our area. Gardeners who would like to learn more about palms may wish to join the International Palm Society. Their address is, PO Box 7075, Lawrence KS 66044-7075. On the internet they can be visited at http://www.palms.org ."
The International Palm Society is in Kansas??
Which got me to thinking ...
Is the ...
... International Apple Tree Society in Miami?
... International Dog Appreciation Society in Korea?
... International Surfing Association in Arizona?
... International Fiscal Responsibility Society in Washington, DC?
I wonder about these things ... too much ... that's why the living room remodeling job is still unfinished and unlivable.