Included here are the deserts in and around Mongolia including the Gobi Desert.

Mongolian Scrub Steppe

In areas like the basins of the Great Lakes and the Ordos Plateau scrub is dominated by species of Caragana (such as C. korshinskii, C. microphylla or C. pygmaea) and/or species of Reumuria (such as R. kaschgarica, R. songarica or R. trigyna). Associated species include Amygdalus pedunculata, Artemisia xerophytica, Atraphaxis frutescens and Oxytropis aciphylla, while endemics or near endemics include Artemisia ordosica (Asteraceae), Asparagus gobicus (Asparagaceae) and Tetraena mongolica (Zygophyllaceae). The Ordos Plateau is surrounded by meanders of the Yellow River in the southern part of Inner Mongolia and forms the northern margin of the Loess Plateau. The shrubby vegetation has been divided into about 28 community types mostly dominated by endemic or locally endemic plants. In the harshest parts of this steppe desert, shrubs species such as Convolvolus tragacanthoides, Oxytropis aciphylla and the endemic Ammopiptanthes mongolicus (Fabaceae), Potaninia mongolica (Rosaceae) and Tetraena mongolica (Zygophyllaceae) predominate. Here both shrubs and herb cover is sparse; perennial herbs are rare but annual species may occur in patches following summer rain. Most of the above species can also be found in the less harsh depressions where higher moisture levels occur, but in addition other shrubs such as Caragana intermedia, C. stenophylla, C. tibetica, Reaumuria soongorica, Zygophyllum xanthoxylon and the endemic Prunus mongolica (Rosaceae) make an appearence. Here shrub cover is more extensive and there is usually a well-developed herb layer. Other endemic shrub species that may be encountered include Artemisia ordosica (Asteraceae).


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