The Tropical Rainforest
The tropical rainforest is hot and it rains a lot, about 80 to 180 inches per year.  This abundance of water can cause problems such as promoting the growth of bacteria and fungi which could be harmful to plants.  Heavy rainfall also increases the risk of flooding, soil erosion, and rapid leaching of nutrients from the soil (leaching occurs when the minerals and organic nutrients of the soil are "washed" out of the soil by rainfall as the water soaks into the ground).  Plants grow rapidly and quickly use up any organic material left from decomposing plants and animals.  This results is a soil that is poor.  The tropical rainforest is very thick, and not much sunlight is able to penetrate to the forest floor.  However, the plants at the top of the rainforest in the canopy, must be able to survive 12 hours of intense sunlight every day of the year.  There is a great amount of diversity in plant species in the tropical rainforest.

Tropical Rainforest Plant Adaptations

Drip-tip Leaves Prop Roots Plant Collecting Rainwater
Drip-tips on leaves help shed excess water. Prop roots help support plants in the shallow soil. Some plants collect rainwater into a central reservoir.
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