Plant Diversity ›› 2012, Vol. 34 ›› Issue (4): 376-.DOI: 10.3724/SP.J.1143.2012.12022

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Plant Diversity and Its Elevational Gradient Patterns in Wulu Mountain, Shanxi, China

 QU  Bo-1、2, MIAO  Yan-MIng-1, ZHANG  Qin-Di-1, BI  Run-Cheng-1   

  1. 1 School of Life Science, Shanxi Normal University, Linfen 041000, China; 2 Jinzhong University, Jinzhong 030600, China
  • Received:2012-02-16 Online:2012-08-25 Published:2012-05-17


Samplings were gathered and examined in forests along altitudinal gradients of Wulu Mountain, China. The results indicated that the major communities in the forests can be classified as Quercus wutaishanica, Pinus tabulaeformis, Acer ginnala, Betula platyphylla, Pinus bungeana, Syringa  reticulate Acer ginnala and Betula platyphylla community. Our research suggests that the Quercus wutaishanica community appears to be a dominant community in a successional stage toward temperate deciduous broadleaved forests. The species richness in different layers of these communities can be distinguished as, herb layer > shrub layer > tree layer. Both the ShannonWiener diversity index and Simpson diversity index showed similar patterns. The species diversity indices of different layers and overall importance value of the forest communities indicate that the forests appear to be successional and subclimax communities in Wulu Mountain. Our research also suggests that there is a peak with higher species diversity index in the communities of middle elevation. We suggested that the pattern could be affected by temperature, moisture, and human disturbance. The pattern could also be influenced by the nature of successional stages and subclimax communities.

Key words: Wulu Mountain, Plant diversity, Elevational gradient, Importance value

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