Floristics and Vegetation of the Forest Dynamics Plots
The similarities and differences among plots in species diversity demonstrated in the previous chapter beget further questions: What abiotic and biotic factors contribute to the similarity in tree diversity of Lambir in southeast Asia and Yasuní in the Amazon? Why do species accumulate at a faster rate in the Congolese forest of Ituri than in the Central American forest of BCI? Fundamentally, however, the signature of each forest depends not just on how many species are packed into an area but also on which ones. The floristic composition of a forest can reveal much about the abiotic and biotic factors influencing the dynamics of the forest, as well as its historical relationships with other forests in the region. In this chapter, we summarize and compare the floristic characteristics of the plots in the CTFS network so far as current data allow, identifying apparent correlates.