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Fate Sanders Barrens

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Brian Bowen, Program Administrator
State Natural Areas Program
William R. Snodgrass Tennessee Tower
312 Rosa L. Parks Avenue, 2nd Floor
(615) 532-0436
brian.bowen@tn.gov
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Fate Sanders Barrens Class II Natural-Scientific State Natural Area

Fate Sanders Barrens is a 230-acre natural area in Rutherford County. It is located on Percy Priest Lake and is under the jurisdiction of the U. S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACOE). Its name derives from a nearby landmark, the Fate Sanders Marina. The natural area is significant because it supports a large open pristine barrens community comprised of perennial grasses and herbaceous plants. Little bluestem is widespread and is the dominant barrens plant here. Eastern red cedar is scattered throughout the barrens and is also a prominent feature. The grassland must periodically undergo prescribed burning to maintain the open condition. Fire keeps cedars and other woody plants from encroaching.

The deep soil that supports the barrens is also habitat for the federally endangered Tennessee coneflower (Echinacea tennesseensis). Fate Sanders serves as an introduction site for Tennessee coneflower. The coneflower at Fate Sanders is an introduction from a nearby population from private land. Its introduction is a means of protecting the only population of five known populations that occurs exclusively on private land. Colonies from the remaining four populations have been protected in state natural areas.

Other noteworthy plants at Fate Sanders include ladies tresses (Spiranthes lacera var. gracilis), limestone fame-flower (Talinum calcaricum), Tennessee milk-vetch (Astragalus tennesseensis), cleft phlox (Phlox bifida ssp. stellaria), and limestone blue star (Amsonia tabernaemontana var. gattingeri). Cedar glades occur intermittently where there is very shallow soil and limestone outcropping. A cedar - hardwood forest occupies the slopes and dissected hilly areas on the northwestern third of Fate Sanders Barrens.

SITE MANAGEMENT

U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, 3737 Bell Rd, Nashville, TN, 37214 phone (615) 889-1975; Division of Natural Areas, 401 Church Street, 7th Floor L&C Annex, Nashville, TN 37243 phone (615) 532-0431

PUBLIC ACCESS

Public parking and trails are not provided. This site is part of the Percy Priest Wildlife Management Area and is open for hunting under TWRA rules.

DIRECTIONS

From Nashville, take I-40 east and exit on Highway 171 then proceed south on Mt Juliet Rd. for approximately five miles, and then bear left on South Mt. Juliet Rd. for one half mile and turn left on Couchville Pike. Go approximately three miles and turn right onto Weakly Road and go three miles. Fate Sanders Natural Area is on the right just before you get to a bridge. There are no landmarks and the natural area along Weakly Road is wooded.

 

 

COUNTY: Rutherford ACREAGE: 230
7.5' QUADRANGLE: Gladeville OWNERSHIP: U.S. Army Corps of Engineers
PHYSIOGRAPHIC PROVINCE: Central Basin YEAR DESIGNATED: 1999