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The Forests of Southern Appalachia

In The Great Smoky Mountains National Park

A Naturalist’s Guide to Understanding and Identifying Southern Appalachian Forest Types.

What is biodiversity? Simply put it is the variety of life found in a particular place, and there is a particular place in the backyard of Eastern America renowned for its biodiversity. It is called Great Smoky Mountains National Park (GSMNP). The Park’s half million acres nurture and protect over 12,000 different life forms both plant and animal, and the search for new life there continues.

These mountain forests are among the most varied and diverse to be found anywhere. Nearly every major forest type in the eastern U. S. grows within the Park’s borders. “The Forests of the Great Smoky Mountains” attempts to digest much of the immense amount of excellent research conducted on the Park’s forests and condense it into a form more easily understood by individuals interested in becoming actively involved in learning more about the forest treasures found here.