OneOf The eight Major Ecosystems


  The average temperature is below freezing for six months out of the year. The winter temperature range is -54 to -1° C (-65 to 30° F). The main seasons in the taiga are winter and summer. The spring and autumn are so short, you hardly know they exist. It is either hot and humid or very cold in the taiga.There are not a lot of species of plants in the taiga because of the harsh conditions. Not many plants can survive the extreme cold of the taiga winter. There are some lichens and mosses, but most plants are coniferous trees like pine, white spruce, hemlock and douglas fir. Coniferous trees are also known as evergreens. They have long, thin waxy needles. The wax gives them some protection from freezing temperatures and from drying out. Evergreens don't loose their leaves in the winter like deciduous trees. They keep their needles all year long. This is so they can start photosynthesis as soon as the weather gets warm. The dark color of evergreen needles allows them to absorb heat from the sun and also helps them start photosynthesis early.