UW-Madison BOTANY 422 - Deserts (15 pages)

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Deserts



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Deserts

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Pages:
15
School:
University of Wisconsin, Madison
Course:
Botany 422 - Plant Geography

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Deserts what are deserts Deserts relative term transitions occur latitudinally with more xeric thorn forests and with grass savannas Mojave Desert Deserts Namib Desert Deserts what are deserts what are deserts relative term high elevation tropical mountains paramo etc are essentially desert like relative term high elevation tropical mountains paramo etc are essentially desert like Haleakala Crater Maui Opuntia Cactaceae in high Andean puna Peru Deserts what are deserts Deserts distinction between subtropical and temperate cool or cold winter deserts subtropical arid regions where potential evaporation 2000mm is annual precipitation 200mm Great Basin Gobi Desert Patagonian Desert Desert Locations lie between 15o and 30o centered on Tropics of Cancer and Capricorn on west sides of continents Desert Locations lie between 15o and 30o centered on Tropics of Cancer and Capricorn on west sides of continents Sonoran Mojave Chihuahuan Saharan Atacama Namib Australian Desert Climate desert climate due to subtropical highs and adiabatic warming of dry air Desert Climate variation in amount of precipitation from semiarid to rainless deserts and circulation of cold currents holding little moisture above the currents along west sides of continents Mojave Desert Climate variation in seasonality of precipitation Mojave winter rains Mediterranean Sonoran light winter rains and heavier summer rain bimodal Chihuahuan only summer rain subtropical Namib Atacama only fog no rain Namib Skeleton coast Desert Climate soil types counter intuitive but clay soils form driest habitats sandy soils better water retention and rocky fissured soils provide the wettest habitats Desert Life Forms Halophytes salt plants adaptations to salt left behind as water is evaporated at surface of soil Desert Life Forms Malakophyllus soft leaved xerophytes arid plants adaptations to water stress by wilting under dry conditions Salt accumulators often succulent Salt excretors Asteraceae daisy family Salicornea



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