Šumava forest vegetation zones

The vegetation in each area is directly dependent on its natural conditions, particularly on the climate, geology and relief, as well as historical development. The result of the relationship between climate and forest biocenose is a vertical stratification of the forest vegetation in the form of forest vegetation zones.

The largest Šumava forest area is comprised of the spruce beech woods (39.2%) and beech spruce woods (32.5%) forest vegetation zones. The remaining 3% of the area is divided between the dwarf pine vegetation zone, pine woods and fir beech woods. See the table below:

Estimated share of the forest vegetation zone area in the Šumava NP

Forest vegetation zone Verbal characteristics of the forest vegetation zone (v.l.s.)Area share in  %
9 Uplands dwarf-pine 1,9
8 Spruce wood 25,3
7 Beech spruce wood 32,5
6 Spruce beech wood39,2
5 Fir beech wood 0,2
0 Pine woodbory 0,9

Defining Šumava forest vegetation zones creates certain issues. There is a certain disharmony between geobotanical mapping and the characteristics of the forest vegetation zones according to the "ÚHÚL system". Recent discoveries suggest that in particular, boundaries 8 and also partially 7 of the forest vegetation zone in the "ÚHÚL system" were set lower than would correspond to the natural occurrence circumstances, growth characteristics and relative representation of beech and fir. Therefore, Šumava NP conducts within the unification of the system of forest typology and in connection with renewal of LHP (forest economy planning), the continuous clarification of the vegetation zones by typology specialists. The survey of the occurrence and growth characteristics of the trees in the highest altitudes indicates vegetation zone interfaces 7 and 8 have a supporting influence.

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