An ecosystem is made up of a community of plants and animals and the environment that supplies them with raw materials for life. It can be as big as a forest stretching across a continent and as small as a tidal pool. The three major living ecosystems focused on are the mountainous regions, hot, dry deserts, and the tropical rainforests.
conditions necessary to grow plants always depend on each plant. Not all plants are alike. They are all different and vary in color, shape, size, and how they live and produce food; yet they all have a few things in common. They all need water, food, and sunlight to stay alive and healthy, though, all plants need different amounts.
Factors of the environment can be good to plants, as well as bad. Just as penguins reproduce during the harshest weather of the arctic (to be sure of their young’s survival in the better conditions), some plants do as well. Plants don’t seek the survival of their offspring as animals do.
Some factors beneficial to the survival of plants are: rain, fertile soil, open areas allowing sunlight to reach the plants, and more. Plants in their natural environments, away from civilization, need rain to survive. Rain is every plant’s main water source because there are no sprinklers or water systems in the wild.
Sunlight and soil help to restore minerals to the plant. It also helps it produce food. Without fertile soil, a plant is unable to grow, for its roots cannot soak in the minerals. Plants would also not be able to survive without sunlight because, for most plants, it is their source to carry out photosynthesis. Photosynthesis is the process of producing food and energy, by a plant, from the sun’s rays.
The main two factors that may harm plant growth are: little water and little sunlight. More factors that may harm it are that of wind, cold weather, too much water, and too much sunlight.
Rainforests are found mostly near the equator because temperatures there are a lot higher. Humidity in rainforests is high and temperatures can reach from seventy-five degrees Fahrenheit to eighty-six degrees Fahrenheit. The rainforest has a warm, moist climate. The top layer of the rainforest is the canopy layer, which has tress standing sixty to one hundred and fifty feet tall.
The main plants in the rainforest biome are trees. In tropical rain forests, the climate is very humid. It is humid in rainforests because of all the rainfall. The approximate amount of annual rainfall is ninety-eight feet per year with room for decrease and increase. This is a lot of annual rain compared to regular forests. Hence the name “rainforest”
Two of many plants that grow in tropical and rainy environments are the Bengal bamboo and the orchid. These plants grow naturally in rainforests, though they can be cultivated. Rainforests have just the right balance to keep these two plants alive There are more than 20,000 varieties of orchids found in the rainforest. Orchids grow in a lot of places. Some of which are: tree branches, tree trunks, and rocks. These plants can also be different colors such as: magenta, purple, yellow, and more.
The Bengal bamboo is found in rainforests as well. Its scientific name is bambustulda. The Bengal bamboo can get as tall as forty to eighty feet. It is approximately three feet in diameter when it is fully matured. It has leaves of a green color and the blades of the plant fall off when these leaves have matured.
This bamboo can be found in the biome of the Southeast Asian rainforest. The Bengal bamboo grows in mostly warm, moist climates. This bamboo can also stand temperatures from as low as forty degrees Fahrenheit to one hundred degrees Fahrenheit.
The Bengal bamboo is beneficial to the rainforest because it reduces soil erosion. This helps especially because rainforests are disappearing at the rate of 80 acres a minute. The Bengal bamboo is not on the endangered species list; therefore, it may help rainforests out for many years to come.
Deserts are areas where rainfall is too low to sustain any vegetation at all. There is very little scrub. Compared to the rainforest, deserts receive less than ten inches of rain per year. In this biome, there is unbroken sunshine year round. Plants in dry deserts receive approximately one inch of rain per year, and because of this, plants have adapted due to the lack of water.
Many plants have adapted to the desert environment in which you live. Plants in the deserts use very little water. When water is used, it is for their survival; but nothing more. The source of water the plants go to for survival is dew from the mornings. This moisture is taken in through their stems and leaves.
The Jumping Cholla is a plant that lives in desert regions. The cholla needs full sunlight. Since they are shrubby tree-like cacti, the open desert allows more sunlight to reach it without it being too tall. The Jumping Cholla can reach eight feet at its most mature state. It is found growing from the pacific coast of southern California to central Baja México. It is found in parts of Arizona as well.
Mountainous Regions and Plants Within
Plants living in mountainous regions have many adaptations to cope with the lack of water. Some have expandable stems for storing water. When rain does fall on mountains, the water quickly runs downward with no time for the plants to absorb it. This can be very hard for the plants to survive. The sun’s radiation also increases from ten to twenty percent with each thousand meter in mountainous regions. These factors are a main reason for plants in these areas to adapt.
The snow plant is a plant that grows in the mountains. Its favorite habitat is the pine needle covered floor of the middle elevation to the highest in the forests along the west coast. It doesn’t necessarily only survive in snow, but it can survive very well in those conditions. This is one of its adaptations.The snow plant has a startling red, blood color. Its scientific name is sarcodessanguinea. It is very unique. The reason being is that it doesn’t depend on its chlorophyll or the process of photosynthesis to produce food. It is one of very few plants that have this ability.
In the late 1980’s and early 1990’s, man created a dome in which there would be controlled environments. It was built thirty minutes North of Tucson and ninety minutes south of Phoenix. In it were many different ecosystems. There was a rainforest facility and had every factor that would run a rainforest. There was also a desert facility and many others.
This biosphere served as a scientific experiment. When it opened to the public in 1990, it began to serve (as well as still does serve) as an onsite learning facility. It allows the public to see how the environment affects our day to day lives. Its purpose was to help provide an opportunity, to scientists, to understand our biosphere. It was then and is now a center for teaching, learning, and research about earth and its systems. Today the biosphere is merely a dome in the middle of the Arizona desert that is a tourist pit stop; but it once was a thriving experimental bubble that allowed learning and knowledge to occur within its walls.
Each state is named a “state flower” as a representative of its land. The golden poppy, white poppy and mariposa lily were nominated for California’s state flower early in the century. On March 2nd, 1903, the golden poppy was named California’s official state flower.
Early sailors nicknamed California “the land of fire” because of the rolling foothills set ablaze. They were of the golden poppies. This is how California was given the name “The Golden State”.California poppy blossoms are two to about three inch cups of gold, bronze, scarlet, terra cotta, rose, or white and grow to about a foot. They grow throughout California, but barely anywhere else. The poppy is one of the earliest flowers to sprout in gardens.God created plants during the seven days of creation. In Genesis 1:12, the bible states: “the land produced vegetation: plants bearing seed according to their kinds and trees bearing fruit with seed in it according to their kinds. And God saw that it was good.” God created plants to make this world beautiful, and provide us with food as well.
In genesis 9:3, God states: “everything that lives and moves will be food for you. Just as I gave you the green plants, I now give you everything.” I think this bible verse means that God gave us all we need to live, such as plants, and that the resources given to us, are from him. The bible also states this in Psalm 104:14 : “He makes grass grow for the cattle, and plants for man to cultivate- bringing forth food from the earth”
Some non-Christians say, ‘how can such complex things, such as plants, be made by God. God would make things simple.’ These people are wrong. God knew of the complexity of all organisms. He tells of his knowledge in the bible. He tells that he knows of the death of plants, the growing of plants, and their complexity. In Zechariah 10:1 it says “ask the LORD for rain in the springtime; it is the LORD who makes the storm clouds. He gives showers of rain to men, and plants of the field to everyone.” This shows God knows of what plants need to grow; and that is rain.
In conclusion, there are many plants in the world living in different environments. Each environment is special because each plant in it is made just for its factors. Some factors are beneficial, some are not, but no matter what, it is for the plants survival.
Plants affect our day to day lives, for they provide us with food and beautiful scenery. A world without plants would be dull and boring. God especially created plants to our liking so that the land we live upon would be as beautiful as he views us to be.
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