Before entering fully into the establishment of the meaning of the term mixed forest, it is necessary to proceed to know the etymological origin of the two words that shape it:
-Firstly, forest has its origin in the Germanic “busk”, which can be translated as “bush”.
-Mixto, secondly, is a word that comes from Latin. Specifically, it derives from “mixtus”.
A forest is a place that has a large number of plants and trees. Mixed, for its part, is something made up of various elements.
With these ideas clear, we can understand what the concept of mixed forest refers to. These are those forests that are made up of a balanced amount of gymnosperms and angiosperms. This means that, in mixed forests, neither of the two kinds of plants predominate.
Mixed forests, therefore, combine leafy trees with broad leaves and trees with needle-like leaves, such as conifers. Usually they exist in temperate regions and represent an area of transition between the temperate deciduous forest and coniferous forests.
In the American continent we can find numerous mixed forests. In the region of the Great Lakes in America north, mixed forests are formed by deciduous trees such as maple and beech and conifers like pine and yours. Also in the Appalachians are conjugated firs, maples and other trees.
Europe, for its part, is home to mixed forests with spruce, fir, birch, beech and other species. The Balkan mixed forest, the Cantabrian mixed forest, the Caucasian mixed forest and the Atlantic mixed forest are some of these forests.
The aforementioned mixed Cantabrian forest occupies more than 79,000 hectares and has a large number of pine, eucalyptus and oak trees, among others. With regard to what is fauna, we have to emphasize the existence of the wolf and the brown bear.
In the case of the southern hemisphere, we have to state that mixed forest can only be found in what is southern Chile.
Mixed forests, in winter, have a particularity: conifers, being perennial, maintain their foliage, while deciduous ones lose their leaves. Thus, in the same forest, it is possible to find green trees and others that display their bare branches.
In addition to all the above, we cannot ignore the existence of what is known as mixed sarmatic forest. It is necessary to clarify that it is an ecoregion that has the particularity of being considered what is the limit of the temperate forests of the European continent at the northern level.
It covers just over 845,000 square kilometers and its territory covers areas of countries such as Russia, Sweden, Norway, Estonia, Belarus, Latvia or Lithuania. In the same way, we cannot ignore the existence in this mixed forest of plant species such as Scots pine and even what is known as Sessile oak.
At present it is considered that this mixed sarmatic forest is in serious danger, in critical condition.