Russian vegetation is divided into six groups: arctic desert, taiga, tundra, wooded steppe, steppe and mixed and deciduous forest. Taiga regions are the largest zones, and these areas hold the largest number of timber trees in the world. Coniferous forests in this area are divided into alder, birch and willow varieties. Swamps and peat bog exist in regions where drainage is poor.
The tundra covers 10 percent of Russia because the marshy areas cannot support tree growth, and the soil is poorly drained and acidic. Tundra vegetation includes moss, shrub willows, spruce, larch, lichen and herbaceous plants. Taiga regions are also known as boreal forest zones, and these areas are located in the western region that is home to pines, shrubs, grass and light soil. Podzol is the most common soil type in taiga areas, and it is acidic with a light soil color.
The mixed forests are located in warmer areas, and spruce and oak are the most common trees. Other plant life, such as elm, ash, pine and maple, exist in mixed zones. This area has healthy soil, which makes it an ideal area for agricultural operations. Wooded steppe areas are a cross between steppe and forest areas. This type of region contains grassland and oak trees, and the wooded steppe transitions into the steppe, which has different types of bluegrass, fescue and turf grass. Drought-resistant plants are found in dry and semi-desert regions. Steppes have high levels of humus with low acidity, and they are a major grain source for the Russian economy.