by Jörg S. Pfadenhauer (Author), Frank A. Klötzli (Author), Christine von Gadow (Translator)
This up-to-date textbook of global vegetation ecology, which comprises the current state of knowledge, is long overdue and much-needed. It is a translation of the textbook “Vegetation der Erde” (Springer-Spektrum, Heidelberg). A short introductory chapter deals with the fundamentals of vegetation ecology that are of importance for the delimitation and characterization of the global vegetation presented in this book (chorology, evolution of plants, physiognomic and structural characteristics, phytodiversity and the human impact on it as well as general terminology concerning both plant growth forms and on vegetation structure types). In the following chapters the zonal and azonal vegetation from the tropics to the polar regions including high mountains is described and discussed. The main focus is on the characterization of interactions between the spatial location of plants and plant communities on the one hand and site conditions, historic and genetic processes, spatial and temporal patterns, ecophysiology and anthropogenic influences on the other hand. Additional information on specific topics is provided in 51 boxes.