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Stunted tree on limestone pavement

Stunted tree on limestone pavement

B590/0062

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Credit

COLIN CUTHBERT / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY COLIN CUTHBERT / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption

Stunted tree on limestone pavement. This tree has been unable to grow to its natural size because its roots have been constrained between the blocks of rock in a limestone pavement. It is a naturally formed miniature or bonsai tree. Limestone pavements are formed by water erosion. Trees and other plants are able to grow in the grykes (clefts between ridges) between the clints (rock ridges). However, there is usually little soil formation and water is removed rapidly into underground streams, making it difficult for plants to grow. The limestone pavement is typical of a karst landscape.

Release details

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