Date of Award

Spring 5-2016

Degree Type

Honors College Thesis


Biological Sciences

First Advisor

Mac H. Alford

Advisor Department

Biological Sciences


The North American Coastal Plain contains some of the highest plant diversity in the temperate world. However, most of the region has remained unstudied, resulting in a lack of knowledge about the unique plant communities present there. This flora catalogues the vascular plant species along the Possum Walk Trail on the southeast corner of the Infinity Science Center in Hancock County, Mississippi. Additionally, interpretive signs have been developed to display information about engaging species and phenomena to increase public interest in native plant life and involve them conservation efforts. The site was surveyed from spring of 2015 to spring of 2016. 205 plant species were identified from 73 families, including 1 lycopod, 7 ferns, 4 gymnosperms, and 184 flowering plants, of which 49 are monocots and 144 are dicots. Of the species collected, 80% are native and 29% are endemic to the North American Coastal Plain.