Download Forest layers 15 April

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815 x 815mm
Life in layers
Like a city, a forest is made up of many
small communities.
The plants are the homes and offices and they are filled with their own noisy,
confident characters like fantails and shy recluses like weta. The forest has
its own dramas, disasters and surprising nightlife like glowworms.
Emergent trees like rimu,
Each creature and each plant has its own place and purpose and they fit
miro, pukatea and rata stick out above
together like pieces of a jigsaw. But it’s a complex jigsaw that works on
the forest canopy like chimneys over
several levels or layers as you can see when you walk in the forest.
a roof. Rimu and miro belong to an
ancient group of conifers called
podocarps. They can grow up to 60
metres tall and live for more than 1000
years! Female trees have small juicy
fruit and male trees have tiny cones.
All these layers provide
ladders for climbing plants
like supplejack and kiekie
The canopy layer
to reach the sunlight.
makes the forest roof, about 20
to 25 metres high. Flowering
trees like tawa, puriri and
kohekohe grow here, and a
Epiphytes like
orchids and astelias
podocarp called tanekaha.
perch high on branches
to get sunlight too.
Sub-canopy trees
like pigeon wood, māhoe, tree
coprosmas and tree ferns make a
layer 10 and 15 metres high.
In the understory
grows smaller shrubs like hangehange,
karapapa and coprosmas.
Down on the
forest floor
in dim light grows a carpet of ferns,
mosses, fungi and seedlings of the
: Sh
shrubs and trees above.