North Carolina is a state in the Southeastern United States. The state borders South Carolina and Georgia to the south, Tennessee to the west and Virginia to the north. North Carolina is the 28th most extensive and the 10th most populous of the 50 United States. North Carolina is known as the Tar Heel State and the Old North State. North Carolina is composed of 100 counties. Its capital is Raleigh, and its largest city is Charlotte. In the past five decades, North Carolina's economy has undergone a transition from heavy reliance upon tobacco and furniture making to a more diversified economy with engineering, biotechnology, and finance sectors. North Carolina has a wide range of elevations, from sea level on the coast to 2,037 m at Mount Mitchell, the highest point in the Eastern US. The climate of the coastal plains is strongly influenced by the Atlantic Ocean. Most of the state falls in the humid subtropical climate zone. More than 500 km from the coast, the western, mountainous part of the state has a subtropical highland climate.
Sea oats are well suited to saline environments, and as such, are important to barrier island ecology and are often used in soil stabilization projects because their long root structure firmly holds loose soil. Sea oats are a protected grass in most states along the East Coast. Picking or disturbing sea oats is punishable by fine in Georgia, Florida, and North Carolina. The oats are a crucial component of the area's hurricane defense strategy, having staved off storms Arthur through Sally in the 2008 hurricane season. If the sea oat colony survives, the oats and nascent dune structure they support are expected to flourish for the foreseeable future.
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Added by Lucky