Woodland

Woodland

[n. wood-land, -luhnd; adj. wood-luhnd]
Woodland, city (1990 pop. 39,802), seat of Yolo co., N central Calif., in a fertile farm area yielding tomatoes, wheat, rice, beans, vegetables, walnuts, almonds, melons, safflower, and sugar beets; inc. 1871. It is a growing manufacturing center with numerous plants for vegetables canning, rice milling, and beet-sugar refining, as well as related warehousing operations. Wine is made in the area. Woodland has many historic homes and is the site of a state historical farm.

Ecologically, a woodland is an area covered in trees, differentiated from a forest. In these terms, a forest has a largely closed canopy – the branches and foliage of trees interlock overhead to provide extensive and nearly continuous shade. A woodland, on the other hand, allows sunlight to penetrate between the trees, limiting shade. Woodlands may support an understory of shrubs and herbaceous plants (often including grasses). Woodlands may form a transition to shrublands under drier conditions.

Woodland is used in British woodland management to mean any smaller area covered in trees, however dense. (Forest is usually used in the British Isles only for more extensive wooded areas, again however dense – and also including Royal forests, which may not be wooded at all). The term Ancient Woodland is used in British nature conservation to refer to any wooded land established for a very long period (equivalent to the American term old growth forest).

Woodlot is a closely-related American term, which refers to a stand of trees generally used for firewood. While woodlots often technically have closed canopies, they are so small that light penetration from the edge makes them ecologically closer to woodland than forest.

See also:

Woodland Ecoregions

Tropical and subtropical grasslands, savannas, and shrublands

Temperate grasslands, savannas, and shrublands

Montane grasslands and shrublands

Mediterranean forests, woodlands, and shrub

Deserts and xeric shrublands

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