Laurel Forests

Laurel Forests

 

subtropical evergreen forests, formed of various species of sclerophyll trees and shrubs. They are distributed in regions with a Mediterranean climate (rainy winters and dry summers), predominantly in the lower mountain belt of the Mediterranean region, on the Canary Islands, on Madeira Island, and in the Cape Mountains; some small laurel forests are found in Western Transcaucasia. Laurel forests have been in existence since the Neocene. The Canary laurel, the avocado Persea indica, Ocotea foetens, Ocotea bulbata (with a short, bulbous trunk), the Canary strawberry tree, tree heath (which grows to 20 m), and English holly predominate in the laurel forests of the Canary and Azores Islands. Laurel forests consisting only of various species of Laurus, with large, leathery leaves, are very shady (between one-twentieth and one-fortieth of daylight penetrates their canopy); in these forests are found rare shade-tolerant plants, including Ruscus and cyclamens.

References in periodicals archive ?
Madeira's many protected areas are a true marvel for nature lovers, boasting numerous hiking trails through rare laurel forests with breathtaking mountain panoramas.
There, it grows as an understorey plant in the laurel forests so is happily adapted to shade and dry conditions.
The islands contain unique ecosystems particular to these volcanic regions, and many of them -- including coastal lagoons and laurel forests -- are under threat.
The north of Gran Canaria, where the laurel forests and the thermophilous forest develop, has only very recently been the focus of recovery efforts.
At the end of the 20th century, the efforts of the Cabildo of Gran Canaria to acquire farms for environmental restoration and the progressive abandonment of agricultural activity allowed the recovery of an important area of the laurel forests and thermophilous forests, laying the foundation for the recovery of the ecosystems destroyed two centuries ago.
Restoration, expansion and improvement of the island%s laurel forests habitat; and
Here the Menceys still rule among the ancient laurel forests which sweep down to the coast.