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The state’s climate, generally mild and equable, varies according to elevation and proximity to Chesapeake Bay and the Atlantic Ocean.
In southeastern Virginia and the Eastern Shore, January temperatures average about 40 °F (4 °C); July temperatures average in the upper 70s F (about 26 °C).
To the east the Coastal Plain province—or Tidewater region—lies low between the fall line and the Atlantic coast.
The province is deeply interlaced by tidal rivers and is dominated by the Northern Neck Peninsula, the Middle Peninsula, and the Virginia Peninsula—all west of Chesapeake Bay.
The Rappahannock, York, and James rivers indent the coast to form the main peninsulas.
Two other systems pass into North Carolina, while in the extreme southwestern corner of the state two major systems flow eventually into the Gulf of Mexico. In the Tidewater, the tidal lowlands are usually covered with loam, a mixed soil rich in organic materials. In the Piedmont, clay and limestone soils dominate, and limestone soils are found in the valley areas west of the Blue Ridge.
Its northern counties reflect the cosmopolitan character of the country’s capital, Washington, D.
The state capital is Virginia was nicknamed the Old Dominion for its loyalty to the exiled Charles II of England during the Puritan Commonwealth and Protectorate (1653–59).
It has one of the longest continuous histories among the American states, dating from the settlement of Jamestown in the early 17th century.
Cover other than trees includes marsh grass in the Tidewater and broom sedge, crabgrass, wire grass, and cultivated crops elsewhere.
The mountainous areas contain tracts of various coniferous species and hardwoods such as hickory and oak.