Temperate Broadleaf and Mixed Forest
Temperate broadleaf and mixed forest is a terrestrial biome, temperate climate. They are generally characterized with a warm environment or temperate latitudes but in other cases, they extend to cool temperatures. Cool temperate species often grow in the southern hemisphere and they include forest types such as mixed deciduous models of China, Japan and the United States of America, Chile, Tasmania and Mediterranean as well as California.
Structurally, the forests features four layers including a canopy that has four mature sized dominant species, a shrub layer, understory layer and a slightly lower layer. There are also herbaceous plants on the understory layer.
In contrast to tropical rain plants, many biodiversity is often concentrated on forest floor. They are the most distinctive and the richest forest in East North America and China. There are also other globally distinctive ecoregions for the plants in Southern Europe, Russian Far East (Russian Far East Temperate Forests), Caucasus and Himalayas. Forests in the countries experience a wide range of temperature and precipitation changes. The trees are however found with other species in areas that receive rainfall throughout.
Temperate Broadleaf and Mixed Forest climate and soils
The broadleaf forests occur in warm summer areas and cold winters with precipitation often spread throughout the area. They are on the other hand more seasonal in other areas. Snow is also common in the northern areas and decreases in south. Heavy tree cover and warm as well as wet summers allowing a maximal to build up organic materials in loamy soils.
The surface of soil is slightly acidic and with a more reddish layer below due to buildup of iron oxides. This is a fertile and rich soil. Vegetation of the broadleaf is primarily composed of deciduous. They shed their leaves on fall and grow new ones each spring. Seasonal changes in aspect are marked.
With reducing latitude in forest zone, many evergreen trees often appear. They are multilayered including a tree layer, a herb layer and a shrub layer. Normally, there is growth and flowering of herbaceous plants during spring. Conifers and more specifically pines grown in edaphic situations characterized with poor soils and frequent fires.
There are also trees that produce large seeds or masts in some years and few in others. In temperate zone forests, lianas are quite common and compete for light when trees shed their trees. There are no epiphytes and this is probably because they are exposed during low winter temperatures.
Biodiversity patterns of broadleaf
Many dominant broadleaf forest species are widespread but in other ecoregions, there can only be a large number of local and eco-regional endemics. Beta diversity is also high for plants, smaller vertebrates and invertebrates. Unusual soils can harbor specialist invertebrates and plants. There are also ecoregions with high gamma and alpha diversity for plants.
Larger broadleaf require bigger and natural landscape to grow well despite large scale disturbance events such as fire. This is because they necessitate conservation of large forest blocks including fungi, species of plants, lichen and invertebrates that depend on late successional forests.
Sensitivity to the environment or to disturbance
Certain temperate broadleaf and mixed forest species are very sensitive to the environment and habitat fragmentation. Understory species on the other hand cannot cross deforested regions.
There is also the significant impact of human activities. Human populations are very high in the zone including many parts of the largest global cities. They are fairly pleasant climatically and highly productive to the plants. This is because the soils are excellent for farming and most of it is cleared for a long time across different parts of the globe.
Similarly, hardwood species are highly valuable for timber. Therefore, the forests are severely damaged or altered for the purpose. In many areas, they are now in second stage growth and they include a wide range of broadleaf and mixed forest species. Many fire climax pine forests also grow into deciduous forests where they are protected from fires by humans.
Pine forests are also largely used for lumber. There are many reforestation measures in such areas. Therefore, many plants from the zone were domesticated for foods, vegetables, herbs and fruits in the Near East and Europe.
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