Also found in: Wikipedia.
a light coniferous forest in which pine is the predominant tree. Pine forests are widespread in the forest and forest-steppe belts of the temperate and subtropical zones and in the mountain-forest belt. They occur on sandy loams, sands, limestones, dolomites, and peat bogs. Pine forests on chalk outcrop-pings, as well as steppe and forest-steppe forests of the temperate belt, are preglacial in age. Subtropical pine forests occur in the mountains and on seacoasts.
Pine forests in North America are represented by various species that form pine groves on poor soils and ancient mixed forests with redwoods. Pine forests with juniper occur in the mountains of Mexico and the West Indies. In the Mediterranean region forests of Italian stone pine (Pinus pinea), Aleppo pine (P. halepensis), Crimean pine (P. pallasiana), Canary pine (P. canariensis), and Austrian pine (P. nigra) predominate. Endemic pine species include the Macedonian pine (P. peuce), which is found in the Balkans, and the Pitsunda pine (P. pityusa), which occurs near Cape Pitsunda in the Caucasus.
Forests of Italian stone pine with an understory of juniper and broom are common in Italy, Spain, Portugal, and Greece. Forests of Aleppo pine occur on poor soils in Algeria and Cyprus; such forests are encountered as far east as Syria and Palestine. The Canary pine is the dominant species in the pine forests of the Canary Islands. The mountain forests of the Balkans, the Pyrenees, the Apennines, Greece, Asia Minor, and Crete consist of the pine P. Laricio and an understory of evergreen shrubs. Classified among Mediterranean pine forests are the forests of Crimean pine in the Crimea and the forests of various pine species in the Caucasus.
In Southeast Asia (Yunnan Plateau, Burma, Cambodia, Japan, and the Philippines) subtropical pine forests form a belt of mountain forests composed of various species of pine. The ground is covered with grasses, and there usually is no shrubbery. The pine forests of the Yunnan Plateau consist of Chinese pine (P. sinensis). Boreal pine forests occur on the plains of Eurasia and North America. Canadian pine forests are confined to sand deposits and peat bogs; their species composition is similar to that of pine forests in the taiga zone of Eurasia, but there is a prevalence of white pine (P. strobus) and jack pine (P. banksiana). In Eurasia forests of Scotch pine predominate.
The various types of pine forests occurring in the taiga zone include those with soil covered with lichen, bearberry, bog moss, or true mosses with bilberry or foxberry. Steppe and forest-steppe zones are characterized by forb and steppe pine groves.
In the USSR pine forests occupy 94 million hectares, roughly 14 percent of the country’s forested area. They play an important part in preserving groundwater and raising yields of agricultural crops in arid zones. They also reinforce sands, gulleys, and mountain slopes and protect against snow avalanches and mud flows.
REFERENCESIl’inskii, A. P. Rastitel’nosl’ zemnogo shara. Moscow-Leningrad, 1937.
Rastitel’nyi pokrov SSSR, part 1. Moscow-Leningrad, 1956.
E. L. LIUBIMOVA