The Victoria Glades are part of a large complex of glades starting just east of the Big River near Morse Mill and extending eastward, beyond Hillsboro and Desoto, to Festus, then south into Ste. Genevieve County. This large complex of glades occurs in a band two to five miles wide. The Victoria Glades Area is composed of 239 acres within this large band. These glades are principally on Jefferson City-Cotter dolomite of Ordivician age.
A similar concentration of glades occurs in southern Missouri in the White River Hills region. In this region the glades typically occur on steep slopes of hills, often extending to the tops of knobs, forming "balds."
The Jefferson County glades are commonly found on south and southwest-facing slopes with forested ridges and are characterized by thin soil and bedrock at or near the surface. Water saturates the ground in winter and spring, but soils become droughty in summer and fall. Grasses and broad-leaved, flowering plants are plentiful. Little bluestem, Indian grass, side oats grama, big bluestem, and prairie dropseed are common grasses. Scores of non-grass species provide food for wildlife and add beautiful color to the glades during seasonal peaks. These glade communities are maintained by periodic prescribed fire and cedar removal. Small pockets of dry upland forest dominated by blackjack oak are also established here.
Other trees and shrubs found on the glades include eastern red cedar, gum bumelia, post oak, flowering dogwood, Indian cherry, and fragrant sumac. Forest vegetation surrounds the open glade areas and many kinds of snakes and lizards as well as larger animals, such as deer and turkey, live in this area.