A forest, also referred to as a wood or the woods, is an area with a high density of trees. As with cities, depending on various cultural definitions, what is considered a forest may vary significantly in size and have different classifications according to how and of what the forest is composed. A forest is usually an area filled with trees but any tall densely packed area of vegetation may be considered a forest, even underwater vegetation such as kelp forests, or non-vegetation such as fungi, and bacteria. Tree forests cover approximately 9.4 percent of the Earth's surface (or 30 percent of total land area), though they once covered much more (about 50 percent of total land area). They function as habitats for organisms, hydrologic flow modulators, and soil conservers, constituting one of the most important aspects of the biosphere.
A typical tree forest is composed of the overstory (canopy or upper tree layer) and the understory. The understory is further subdivided into the shrub layer, herb layer, and also the moss layer and soil microbes. In some complex forests, there is also a well-defined lower tree layer. Forests are central to all human life because they provide a diverse range of resources: they store carbon, aid in regulating the planetary climate, purify water and mitigate natural hazards such as floods. Forests also contain roughly 90 percent of the world's terrestrial biodiversity.
Other articles related to "forests, forest":
... In the 1970s Enfield and Riamukka State Forests were expanded over former Crown lands to include the steep areas of the Mummel River catchment ... National Trail which was first used in the 1970s follows the Mummel Forest Road to the east of the park ... In 1992 North-East Forest Alliance Forest (NEFA) protesters set up a camp in what is now Mummel Gulf National Park ...
... Forest, Wisconsin is the name of some places in the U.S ... state of Wisconsin Forest County, Wisconsin Forest, Fond du Lac County, Wisconsin, a town Forest, Richland County, Wisconsin, a town Forest, St ... Croix County, Wisconsin, a town Forest, Vernon County, Wisconsin, a town Forest (community), Wisconsin, an unincorporated community in St ...
... The Okanogan National Forest is a U.S ... National Forest located in northern and western Okanogan County in north-central Washington State, United States. 2,342.2 sq mi, or 6066.3 km²) forest is bordered on the north by Canada, on the east by Colville National Forest, on the south by the divide between the Methow and the Stehekin-L ...
... Shasta County has extensive forests, which cover over one half the land area with commercially productive forest systems ... Common forest alliances include mixed oak woodland and mixed conifer-oak woodland as well as douglas fir forest ...
... The Wayne National Forest is located in the south-eastern part of the US state of Ohio, in the Unglaciated Allegheny Plateau ... It is the only national forest in Ohio ... Forest headquarters are located between The Plains and Nelsonville, Ohio, on US Route 33, overlooking the Hocking River ...
Famous quotes containing the word forest:
“The forest of Compiegne. Look at it. Like a kind grandmother dozing in her rocking chair. Old trees practicing curtsies in the wind because they still think Louis XIV is king.”
—Billy Wilder (b. 1906)
“How old the world is! I walk between two eternities.... What is my fleeting existence in comparison with that decaying rock, that valley digging its channel ever deeper, that forest that is tottering and those great masses above my head about to fall? I see the marble of tombs crumbling into dust; and yet I dont want to die!”
—Denis Diderot (17131784)
“This land is your land, this land is my land,
From California to the New York Island.
From the redwood forest to the Gulf Stream waters
This land was made for you and me.”
—Woody Guthrie (19121967)