Acta Geographica Sinica ›› 2014, Vol. 69 ›› Issue (7): 916-925.doi: 10.11821/dlxb201407004

• Orginal Article • Previous Articles     Next Articles

Floristic traits and geographic patterns of natural montane forests at community level on the Loess Plateau, North China

Mingfei ZHAO1,2(), Yuhang WANG1,2, Kaixiong XING1,2, Muyi KANG1,2(), Quanru LIU3, Qiuyi LI2, Yongmei HUANG2   

  1. 1. State Key Laboratory of Earth Surface Processes and Resource Ecology, Beijing Normal University, Beijing 100875, China
    2. College of Resources Science and Technology, Beijing Normal University, Beijing 100875, China
    3. College of Life Sciences, Beijing Normal University, Beijing 100875, China
  • Received:2014-01-24 Revised:2014-06-07 Online:2014-07-20 Published:2014-09-12
  • Supported by:
    National Natural Science Foundation of China, No.41271059;National Key Basic Research Special Foundation of China, No.2011FY110300]


Based on the sampling data, we analyzed and revealed the floristic characteristics and the relationships of floristic composition between and among 11 mountains on the Loess Plateau. The results indicate that: (1) The floristic composition in forest communities in this region is abundant. Among the 353 plots, 1222 species of vascular plants, belonging to 473 genera of 108 families, were discovered. In those species, 1179 species of 447 genera of 93 families are Angyospermae, 9 species of 7 genera of 4 families are Gymnospermae, and 34 species of 19 genera of 11 families are Pteridophyta. (2) On the regional and local scales, the dominant distribution types of floristic elements at the family and genus levels are temperate origin, especially the north temperate origin. This characteristic is unique on the scale of community level. (3) The first axis of NMDS ordination revealed typical variation range of elevational gradient. The second axis displayed the latitudinal relationship between and among different mountains. The whole study area can be divided into 4 groups with different levels of floristic linkage by hierarchical clustering. Through the comparison of maximum Sørenson similarity coefficient, Helan Mountain, located at the northwest edge of the region, had the weakest relation with other mountains, whereas Taiyue Mountain had the strongest relation with all of the other mountains. (4) Multiple linear regression analysis accounted for 42.1% of the variation within the R/T value (ratio of the tropical to the temperate elements), revealing a significant trend that the R/T value in the region increased at sites with high annual average temperature, whereas it decreased at sites with high elevation. However, no significant tendency of the R/T value with annual precipitation was found in the same analysis.

Key words: Loess Plateau, forest community, plantflora, R/T value, geographic pattern