A Rare Shale Glade

There are limestone glades, sandstone glades and even shale glades.

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This one is a shale glade.

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You can tell by the shale on the surface. Glades are determined by the amount of rock at the surface.

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Patches of mosses and lichens grow on the glade,

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and not on the surrounding hills.

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Now comes the exciting part: This glade is the only one of its kind in North America! There is shale on other glades, but it isn’t the same age as the shale on this one.

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Glades the age of this one are so rare that they’re considered a globally endangered plant community!


6 responses to this post.

  1. That’s really interesting. These places almost always have alkaline soil and I’m always watching for them, because many orchids and other plants love alkaline soil. Our soil is so acid that I can write off ever finding quite a list of plants. Hepatica, spicebush, leatherwood-rarely seen here.


    • This place is on private ground and is top secret. I’m friends with several state biologists and botanist. One good friend is the national botanist for the Forest Service. The woman who owned the glade passed away several years ago. The son thinks he should get a lot of money for it. So, I hadn’t been there for years. I’m not sure what exactly grows there. We have several sandstone and limestone glades and barrens scattered around the southern end of Illinois. I have 2 sandstone barrens on my rural property that the state maintains because it’s a registered Land and Water Reserve.


  2. Posted by Therese on April 7, 2013 at 9:19 am

    Thanks for passing on your knowledge and insights. Very interesting!


  3. wow, I love this kind of info.


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