The chaparral is a biome found in small sections of most continents
located in bands between 30 and 40 degrees N and 30 and 40 degrees S of
the equator. It is a shrubby coastal area that has hot dry summers at 40
°C and mild, cool, winters (usually about 10 °C.), This makes fires and
droughts very common, most of the rain in this biome comes in the
winter. The total annual rainfall in a chaparral ranges from 38-100 cm
The word chaparral comes from "chaparro," which means scrub oak in
Spanish. Chaparrals are also called Mediterranean scrub, shrublands, or
scrublands. It is also called the Mediterranean Forest, Woodland, and
Scrub biome. The chaparral biome has many different types of terrain.
Some examples are flat plains, rocky hills and mountain slopes.
It is a community of drought
tolerant plants (xerophytes)
dominated by dense shrubs with
leathery leaves or needles; the shrubs are interspersed with some
woodland. Most of the plants have small, hard leaves which hold
moisture. The plants are also very well adapted to fires. Plants in the
chaparral often have root systems designed to get as much water as
the particular Mattoral from a specific area take the name of the area
For example the
Mattoral Espinoso Tamaulipense (on the photos ) is a type of
vegetation existing in Tamaulipas and extending to the northern Nuevo
León, Coahuila, and southern Texas.
Some species of climbing
plants develop holdfast roots which help to support the vines on
trees, walls, and rocks. By forcing their way into minute pores and
crevices, they hold the plant firmly in place.
Climbing plants, like the poison ivy (Toxicodendron
radicans), Boston ivy (Parthenocissus
tricuspidata), and trumpet creeper (Campsis
radicans), develop holdfast roots which help to
support the vines on trees, walls, and rocks. By forcing their
way into minute pores and crevices, they hold the plant firmly
in place. Usually the Holdfast roots die at the end of the first
season, but in some species they are perennial. In the tropics
some of the large climbing plants have hold-fast roots by which
they attach themselves, and long, cord-like roots that extend
downward through the air and may lengthen and branch for several
years until they strike the soil and become absorbent roots.
Major references and further lectures:
1) E. N. Transeau “General Botany” Discovery Publishing House,