Usually called mesic hammock in this area, this is a tall, dense, closed canopy hardwood forest on level to moderately sloping fertile soil. Drainage may range from rather poor to excellent, but there is no flooding. Fire is rare and never intense. The drier, more sterile areas tend to be dominated by evergreen hardwoods, while the more moist, fertile lands are dominated by deciduous hardwood species. The relatively dense canopy is usually composed of fire-intolerant species such as southern magnolia, live oak, red bay, pignut hickory, American holly, black cherry, pignut hickory, laurel oak, water oak, sweetgum, swamp chestnut oak, white ash, basswood and spruce pine in the overstory, and hop-hornbeam in the understory. Many other plant species are usually present including many kinds of vines such as wild grape, poison-ivy, and Virginia creeper and many shade tolerant herbaceous plants such as violets, spike grass, woods grass, and partridge berry in the ground cover. Loblolly pine is often a common component on disturbed sites.
Common animals include white-tailed deer, armadillo, gray squirrel, wild turkey, pileated woodpecker, red-bellied woodpecker, red-eyed vireo, summer tanager, parula warbler, box turtle, and yellow rat snake.
Mesic hammock often is associated with and grades into upland pine forest, slope forest, xeric hammock or bottomland forest.
While hundreds of small patches of young-growth mesic hammock may be found throughout Alachua County, large old-growth sites are extremely rare. Those found in San Felasco Hammock State Preserve are the best examples. Good examples of this community are at Hornsby Springs, Fred Bear Hammock, Barr Hammock, Buzzard's Roost, Domino Hammock, Kanapaha Prairie, Paynes Prairie State Preserve, Oleno State Park, Serenola Forest, Palm Point Hill, and the Cross Creek area.