The Tundra (by hbmi1999)

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by MrReGlog
Last updated 9 years ago

Social Studies

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The Tundra (by hbmi1999)

The word Tundra comes from the Finnish word that means barren or treeless land

Climate:■long, cold, dark winters (6 to 10 months with mean monthly temperatures below 32° F or0° C.)■low precipitation (less than five inches/year) coupled with strong, drying winds. Snowfall is actually advantageous to plant and animal life as it provides an insulating layer on the ground surface

Diamond leaf willow

That means that mostly shrubs and small plants grow there and very few / no trees

There is barely any vegetation in the tundra, only about 1,700 different species, which isn't very much. These are mostly shrubs, sedges, mosses, lichens and grasses. There are about 400 varieties of flowers. The growing season is only about 50 to 60 days long. There are no trees, except for some birches in the lower latitudes. The ground is always frozen beneath the top layer of soil, so trees can't send their roots down. Willows do grow on some parts of the tundra but only as low carpets about 3 inches (8 cm) high. Most plants grow in a dense mat of roots which has developed over thousands of years. The soil is very low in nutrients and minerals, except where animal droppings fertilize the soil.


Permafrost, not cold temperatures per se, is generally believed to be what prevents tree growth. Furthermore, freeze-thaw activity, a thin active layer, and solifluction during the warmer months contribute to strong controls on vegetation patterns and create a mosaic of microhabitats and plant communities.

Caribou Moss

Alpine Bluegrass




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