J Integr Plant Biol. ›› 1983, Vol. 25 ›› Issue (2): -.

• Research Articles •    

Studies on the Cathaya Communities

Ying Jun-sheng, Ying Tsün-shen Ma Cheng-gong, Li Liang-qian, Zhang Zhi-song and Zhang Wu-xiu   

Abstract: Cathaya argyrophylla in China is generally referred as a “living fossil.” Cathaya was widely distributed in Eurasia during the Tertiary, but is now confined to central and east central China where it exhibits a scattered distribution. Field observations were made in Jinfushan (29˚ N; 107˚10′E), Sichuan Province, in 1978 and in the Huaping Forest District (25˚31′10″— 25˚39′36″N; 109 ˚48′54″—l09˚58′2″E), Guangxi Province, in 1979. In this paper the composition and structure of these interesting communities, their environment, as well as some changes within the communities are discussed. The Cathaya mixed communities contain 88 species of higher plants, 28 species of mosses, and two species of lichens. Among the higher plants 65 species (74%) are endemic to China, 23 species have a Sino-Japanese distributional pattern, and a few are Sino-Southeasr Asian dements. According to the coefficient of similarity of the components, differences in the bedrock underlying these forests, and dominant species, these communities can be divided into two different Cathaya mixed communities. Based on Raunkiar’s classification of life form, the phanerophytes rank first in both types of Cathaya communities (Figure 1) amounting to 89.9% and 81.3% in each com munity. These communities are different from temperate coniferous forests, which contain high percentages of hemicryptophytes. The dynamics of the communities are discussed.

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