Subshrubs

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Subshrubs

 

low-growing plants (5-60 cm tall) with lignified perennial, usually profusely branched shoots and no clearly expressed main trunk. Subshrubs often have a long rootstock (for example, bilberry and mountain cranberry); some have creeping shoots (cranberry). Sometimes, particularly in the high mountains, subshrubs assume a pulvinate form (Diapensia lap-ponica). The principal aboveground shoots live five to ten years. Subshrubs predominate in the vegetation cover of the tundras (species of birch and willow and many Ericaceae); they sometimes form a solid layer in coniferous forests. Subshrubs predominate in sphagnum marshes (cranberry, bog whortleberry, marsh andromeda, leatherleaf, and rhododendron) and form the vegetation of such wastelands as the heaths in Western Europe. They grow in the high mountains of South America, South Africa, and New Zealand, as well as in the Pamirs.


Subshrubs

 

perennial plants in which the lower parts of the shoots bearing the renewal buds become woody and live for several years while the upper parts remain grassy and die each year (unlike in shrubs and undershrubs). Subshrubs are usually not more than 80 cm high; in rare cases they reach a height of 150–200 cm. They differ from perennial grasses in that their renewal buds are normally several centimeters above the ground. Subshrubs are found primarily in arid regions. The position of the buds above the ground protects them from overheating in the scorching soil. Examples of subshrubs are Ceratoides and many species of steppe and desert wormwoods, vetches, and saltworts (Halocnemum, Kalidium). An example of a particularly small subshrub is the creeping plant thyme.

References in periodicals archive ?
Sometimes, the subshrub and moss layers in the taiga forest are distributed in patches, in a mosaic pattern.
Broom snakeweed is a subshrub or large forb whose growth was relatively stunted at our study area in Oklahoma.
This species occurs as prostrate or cushion subshrub forms, developing the so-called "murtillares", in plains on the austral slopes extremely exposed to winds, where winter snow can remain for several months (Roig 1998).
Suaeda californica, or California sea-blite, is a rare perennial subshrub in the goosefoot family.
Lifeforms (S = Shrub, Ss = subshrub, A = Annual, B = Biennial, and HP = Herbaceous Perennial) of host plants are shown.
The host plant is an early successional, evergreen, nitrogen-fixing subshrub that grows on glacial moraine and river bars.
1-m elevation range intermediate between that of Eriogonum fasciculatum (a subshrub of the coastal sage scrub) and Salicornia subterminalis (an obligate wetland subshrub of tidal marshes).
In the Karakum Desert, where average annual rainfall is 4-6 in (100-150 mm), average production of aerial biomass in shrub, subshrub, and herbaceous communities is 450-510 kg/ha, with a maximum of 1,230 kg/ha.
These obligate postfire seeders, along with the subshrub Helianthemum scoparium, had more deeply buried seeds, and some of them were able to survive where soil heating was prolonged.
Raylessness occurs in a number of Brassicaceae in which there is branching of stems from the base of a shrub or subshrub, and in which each of these branches bears an appreciable weight in terms of flowers and fruits.