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Water Parks

Florida Guide > State Parks

DAGNY JOHNSON KEY LARGO HAMMOCK

Dagny Johnson Key Largo Hammock State Park; what a mouthful! And what an eyeful of rare plants, a huge variety of trees, butterflies and unusual tree snails.

This park is located a quarter of a mile from the intersection of the U. S. 1 and Country Road 905 in Key Largo.

Dagny Johnson was an environmentalist who sat on commitees that were instrumental in halting the urbanisation of Key Largo. This very park had been designated as the location for blocks of flats as recently as the latter part of the last century. What a travesty that would have been. Dagny lived just long enough to see the park honouring his name in 2002; he died in 2003.

This is one of those parks that are best visited in winter when it is cooler and we do not have to swat away those darned midges. If you are a bird spotter, you will want to schedule your visit for April and October when you will seethose migrating birds. Blue whiskered Vireos and mangrove cuckoos are resident here.

The butterflies here are outstanding, you are likely to see mangrove and hammock skippers and silver banded hair streaks. Visit the butterly garden with its local flora to see the greatest variety.

There are 80 species of trees here; it is interesting to note that some entire states do not have 80 varieties of trees. Here is also the largst remnants of rockland hammock in the whole of America.

The park has 6 miles of trails to explore, some of these are paved so therefore suitable for wheelchairs. If you prefer an organised walk, then time your visit for a thursday or sunday when there is a ranger led walk. These start at 10. am.

They are justly proud of their rare plants and animals and here you may see American crocodiles, wild cotton and mahogony mistletoe. A ranger is the best person to point these out to you.

There is a picnic area just across from the butterfly garden; access it by way of the wooden boardwalk. Take your own food and drink with you; no cafe here.

Rangers occasionally host lectures at this park; phone ahead for details. This park is only occasionally staffed and there is an honour system to pay your $1. 50 entrance fee.

Dagny Johnson Key Largo Hammock Botanical State Park
P. O. Box 487
Key Largo, Florida 33037

Phone: 305-451-1202

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Page added on: 9 February 2008
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