Monday, 21 June 2010

Trees

The many types of forests are designated by their distance from the equator and their altitude. Forests fall into the following major categories: tropical rainforests, sub-tropical forests, Mediterranean forests, temperate forests, coniferous forests and montane forests. The type of forest is determined by the types of trees that grow there. 

The trees in forests are mainly used to create fuel and paper. About half of the wood harvested from forests around the world is used for heating homes and other buildings. Forests are so important to the economy around the world that they are usually managed by local or national governments to prevent illegal logging, accidental fires or other destructive activities.

Forests are an ecosystem composed of trees, plants, animals, soil, and various microorganisms. Forests cover about 30% of the earth's surface. Forests grow in all types of landscapes including both salt and fresh water areas. In fact, some forests are located on moving glaciers.

The full size chart and map below are courtesy of the US National Arboretum. Visit http://www.usna.usda.gov for more information.

Plant Hardiness Zone Maps for the United States and Canada