After the kaolin is removed, the land is carefully reclaimed and restored by contouring and grading the surfaces to blend with the surrounding terrain. Reclaimed lands are suitable for a wide variety of uses including agriculture, forest production and wildlife. Kaolin, which is also known as “china clay,” is a white, alumina-silicate used in making paper, plastics, rubber, paints, vinyl wire insulation, printing inks, cosmetics, fiberglass and nylon, auto and truck body components, medicines, ceramics, catalysts for petroleum refining, and extenders for fertilizers, pesticides, and herbicides.
Robert Pim Butchart began manufacturing Portland cement from 1888 to 1909 near his birthplace of Owen Sound, Ontario, Canada from the area’s rich limestone deposits. In 1909, when the limestone quarry was exhausted, Robert’s wife Jennie set about turning the former quarry into the Sunken Garden, which was completed in 1921 and is on the Canadian Register of Historic Places.
The Mosaic Company’s phosphate reclamation areas shown at the South Pasture Mine in Hardee County, Florida are isolated or connected within the Doe Branch drainage area and was constructed after phosphate mining between 1998-2007 with sand tailings backfill. The mitigation wetlands received muck application within the wetland footprint and the uplands were topsoiled, spaded with mature upland trees, and also used as a permitted gopher tortoise relocation site. The complex consists of deep and shallow marsh, wet prairie, and mixed hardwood forest communities surrounded by an upland buffer and adjacent preserve to the North providing high quality habitat replacement after mining.