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    In the United States, tropical and subtropical forests are found only in south Florida, covering the southern part of the Floridian Coastal Plain and the Florida Keys. The climate is typically hot and humid with abundant rainfall, although droughts do occur. Soils range widely depending on landform and parent material, and can be organic, fine-textured silts, or coarse-textured sands. These forests develop best on moist hammocks with organic soils. They are the stable climax vegetation on the slightly higher portions of the landscape where fire is infrequent. South Florida slash pine (Pinus elliottii var. densa Little & Dorman) dominates areas with more frequent fires with the fire-sensitive subtropical and tropical hardwoods restricted to subordinate positions. Lower wet areas are occupied by cypress, saw grass, or wet prairie communities.

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    Outcalt, Kenneth W. 1997. An Old-Growth Definition for Tropical and Subtropical Forests in Florida. Gen. Tech. Rep. SRS-13. Asheville, NC: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, Southern Research Station. 12 p.


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