The assemblage of plant species, e.g. trees, shrubs, grasses, creepers and climbers and the like living in association with one another in a given environment is known as natural vegetation.

Contrary to this, a forest denotes a large tract covered by trees and shrubs which has an economic significance for us.

Thus, a forest has a different connotation than what the Natural Vegetation has.

The variations in climatic conditions in India have resulted in having various types of natural vegetation in different parts of the country.

It is so because each plant needs a definite range of temperature and precipitation for its growth.

This justifies the growth of tropical evergreen vegetation confined mainly to the Western Ghats, on account of hot and wet climatic conditions.

The same is true for temperate evergreen vegetation of northeast India and thorny or arid or semi-arid vegetation of Rajasthan desert and adjoining areas.

Deciduous vegetation grows in central parts of India owing to moderate climatic conditions prevailing over there.


Major Vegetation Types

Natural vegetation cover in India is generally divided under the following heads:

[1] Moist Tropical Evergreen and Semi–evergreen Vegetation

[2] Moist Tropical Deciduous Vegetation

[3] Dry Tropical Vegetation

[4] Tidal Vegetation and

[5] Mountain Vegetation