Broad-Leaved Forests

The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Broad-Leaved Forests


forests of deciduous (summer-green) trees with broad laminae. Broad-leaved forests are widespread in eastern North America, Europe, North China, and Japan as the native vegetation between the coniferous and boreal forests of the north and the steppes and the Mediterranean, or subtropical, vegetation of the south.

Broad-leaved forests are confined to humid and moderately humid regions with lessened continentality, even annual distribution of precipitation, and relatively high temperatures. Gray, dark gray, and brown forest soils are characteristic, with chernozems sometimes occurring.

The trees in broad-leaved forests constitute the first and second layers of foliage. An undergrowth stratum of shrubs makes up the third layer, and grasses and low brush make up the fourth and fifth layers. Beech and oak broad-leaved forests predominate in Europe, with hornbeam and linden forests less common. In addition to the principal trees, ash, elm, and maple commonly occur in European broad-leaved forests. In North America maple-beech, oak-hickory, and oak forests are most widespread. Oak-chestnut forests were common there until the chestnut was wiped out by the parasitic fungus Endothia parasítica. Other frequently encountered trees are the tulip tree, liquidambar, and American linden. In coniferous-broad-leaved forests, pines, spruces, larches, and other coniferous species constitute a significant part of the stand. Common members of the understory in the broad-leaved forests of Eastern Europe are hazel, hedge maple, Tatar maple, European bird cherry, and spindle tree. Mesophyllic eutrophic or mesotrophic species predominate in the grass cover of the broad-leaved forests; prominent species in European forests are mercury, goutweed, dead nettle, wild ginger, lungwort, woodruff, and hairy sedge. Vernal ephemeroid geophytes, whose leaves open and whose seeds mature before foliage appears on the trees, also are characteristic. Common species are corydalis, anemone, toothwort, snowdrop, squill, and star-of-Bethlehem.

In the southern hemisphere forests of evergreen beech (Nothofagus) are classified as broad-leaved forests.


Rastitel’nyi pokrov SSSR: Poiasnitel’nyi tekst k “Geobotanicheskoi karte SSSR.” Moscow-Leningrad, 1956.
Schmithüsen, J. Obshchaia geografiia rastitel’nosti. Moscow, 1966. (Translated from German.)
Walter, H. Rastitel’nost’ zemnogo shara, vol. 2. Moscow, 1974. (Translated from German.)
Tolmachev, A. I. Vvedenie v geografilu rastenii. Leningrad, 1974.


The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
References in periodicals archive ?
Spectacular forest meadows in midlands, broad-leaved forests, subalpine and alpine meadows at the top of mountains occupy the greatest territory of region.
The history of these broad-leaved forests dates back 25 to 50 million years, when they covered most of this Northern Temperate region.
Yunnan supports an extremely rich biodiversity and various vegetation types, but evergreen broad-leaved forests dominate the area (Wu, 1980,1987).
Walking along the trail, visitors can enjoy the views of ferns and evergreen broad-leaved forests commonly found at the low and mid elevations.
[16.] Popadyuk RV, Smirnova OV, Chistyakova AA (1994) Eastern European Broad-leaved Forests. Moscow: Nauka, 364 p.
However, the amounts of earthworms do not differ between broad-leaved forests and conifer plantation forests (Ichikawa et al., 2008).
The comparative analysis of the forest formation pattern complexity was conducted according to the natural regions of the republic or by its generalizing groups [20], in accordance with the landscape conditions matrix and zonal vegetation: 1) Pre-Kama taiga coniferous-deciduous forests; 2) Pre-Kama region of northern broad-leaved forests with spruce parts; 3) Pre Volga region of broadleaf forests with spruce in the north, and ash in the south; 4) Regions of the southern Trans-Volga-Kama broadleaf forests; 5) Trans-Volga-Kama regions of northern meadow steppes in combination with deciduous forests.
In addition to dominated broad-leaved forests in the Southwest Yunnan, most areas are mainly dominated by coniferous forests which cover an area of 4.53 million hectares and account for 48.6% of the total forest area in Yunnan province.
Ecoregion II is covered by monsoon evergreen broad-leaved forests dominated by Schima wallichii Choisy, Castanopsis delavayi Franch, and small areas of Pinus kesiya Royle ex Gordon forest, while ecoregion III is dominated by evergreen Quercus Linn.
Liu, "A study on the dynamics of species diversity of the secondary succesional communities of evergreen broad-leaved forests on Jinyun Mountain," Journal of Southwest China Normal University, vol.
In northern European forests in the temperate--boreal transition zone, human activities were responsible for a decline of broad-leaved forests and expansion of spruce (Bradshaw & Hannon, 1992; Lindbladh et al., 2000; Niklasson et al., 2002), particularly in the past 300 years (Lindbladh & Foster, 2010).