Information on Plant Life in the Rainforest

Information on Plant Life in the Rainforest
Rainforests are lush and dense (due to the abundance of water) and life flourishes. The plant life varies greatly, it all holds a mystery and beauty that invites the traveler to look deeper. The infrastructure of the rainforest is classified in three sections; the canopy, the understory and the forest floor.

The Forest Floor

In tropical rainforests almost no plants live on the forest floor. Because there is 100% humidity, and 2% or less light. The forest floor is where dead foliage decomposes. In temperate rainforests, plants that are tolerant of shade (such as toadstools and grasses) will thrive.

The Understory

The understory is the space between the forest floor and the canopy. This is home to epiphytes, plants that grow directly on other plants. Ferns, and hundreds of species of lichens and mosses grow there. Vines are rooted on the ground but grow around and over the trees of the forest.

The Canopy

The canopy is formed by the tree tops which can be 80-150 or more feet above the ground. Some trees grow even taller, creating an emergent layer. Rubber trees, Sitka spruce, Western hemlock, Gommier, and several species of chataignier, other conifers and deciduous trees live in the rainforests. Which types of trees are in a forest is determined by the location of the forest.

Types Of Rainforests

There are two types of rainforests, temperate and tropical. Temperate rain forests are located along the western edge of North and South America with at least 60 to 200 inches of rain per year. Tropical rain forests occur where the weather is always warm and the land receives 50 to 260 or more inches of rain per year.

Edibles Of The Rainforest

The rain forests provide us with bananas, pineapples, coconuts, Brazil nuts. Many spices are found there as well: cloves, nutmeg, ginger and cinnamon.

Types Of Flowers

The rain forest is home to many beautiful flowers like orchids, hibiscus, and periwinkle. There are over 25,000 species of orchids; poaching of these breeds has caused many of them to be endangered.

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