Vegetative Zones

  • Desert:
    Extending from the limit of Region I to Region IV.
  • High Andean Plain/Steppe: 
    Found in the Andean Mountain Range, extending from Chile’s northern boundary at the borders with Peru and Argentina, to the mountains of Region VII. This zone is characterized by its relative aridity and short growing season.
  • Scrublands and Dry Sclerophyllous Forests:
    This zone extends across Chile’s entire central region and is characterized by a typical Mediterranean climate, which supports dry open canopy forests and shrub-like trees.
  • Deciduous Forests:
    The deciduous forest zone extends from 33°S to 41°S, between Chile’s Regions V and X, and has a mild temperate climate.
  • Broadleaf Evergreen Forests:
    In this zone, the forests are composed of broadleaf evergreen trees with a varied floristic composition that is considered to have been present historically. Gajardo (1983) indicates that most likely, these forests also extended to the coastal mountain chain of central Chile, but they have since disappeared probably due to accelerated human settlements.
  • Andean-Patagonian Forests:
    These extend from 37°S to Chile’s southern tip, through the densely forested Southern Andean Mountain Range. The vegetative landscape is distinguishable by the presence of the deciduous southern beech or lenga forests (Nothofagus pumilio), the most common timberline species in the Andean Mountain Range. The presence of snow is an ecological characteristic of these forests.
  • Evergreen Forests and Peat Bogs:
    These occur in mountainous sectors on the western sides of the Patagonian mountains. They are also found on the long narrow band of outer islands that are spread across southern Chile from the island of Chiloé in Region X, all the way to the tip of Chile by Cape Horn (Region XII).
  • Patagonian Steppe:
    This corresponds to the vegetation found at the southern tip of South America. It has a broadly homogenous steppe physiognomy, with grasses and short shrubs

Source: Gajardo, 1993