The pine rockland habitat at the Estate is the largest block of this habitat that remains on the shore of Biscayne Bay today. The 108 acres of pine rockland at the Deering Estate at Cutler consist of a moderately dense stands of South Florida slash pine with an understory mosaic of saw palmetto and cabbage palm. Many locally and federally endangered species call this habitat home, including deltoid spurge, Small’s milkwort, and Garber’s spurge. Pine rocklands are fire-dependent ecosystems, relying on regular burns to clear out types of trees which would otherwise create too much shade and limit the growth of sun loving pines and palms. The exclusion of natural fires in the Cutler Bay neighborhood lead to the growth of adense hardwood sub-canopy. The Deering Estate at Cutler works with Natural Areas Management to introduce controlled wildfires and prescribed burns. Over the last 12 years, these methods have reduced the hardwood coverage and allowed the pines and shrubs to thrive once more. Many of the slash pines at the Deering Estate at Cutler were twisted and knocked down during Hurrican Andrew in 1992. Of those that survived the storm’s damage, most were severely stressed and subsequently attacked by pine bark beetles. In the year following Andrew, almost 95% of the Estate’s mature pine trees were destroyed by this infestation. 21,195 seedlings were replanted in the pine rocklands in 1995; nearly 90% of these have survived in the 23 years since. Overall, the Deering Estate at cutler’s pine rocklands are healthy and recuperating thanks to regular maintenance by experienced and skilled natural area crews.