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View Poll Results: Which climate is more subtropical?
Turpan 5 15.15%
Eureka 28 84.85%
Voters: 33. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 06-09-2012, 09:59 PM
 
Location: In transition
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tom77falcons View Post
The first one doesn't appear "dead" to me. Maybe they grow orange trees or banana in the back, lol, since citrus and banana grows in Charleston and the rest of the Lowcountry on south from there. This from a Charleston blog I read: baxter sez: Orange report

I think citrus can grow on Scilly Isles and Eureka as well without any problem. I think though they tend to be lemons vs. oranges because the lack of heat does not produce any sugar in the fruit.
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Old 06-09-2012, 10:29 PM
 
Location: New York City
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Quote:
Originally Posted by burloak View Post
True, Koppen arbitrarily "chose" 22c
just like he chose the -3c threshold,
IMO nothing magical about either temperature.
He easily could have chose 21c and -2c.

The worlds climates are transitional and it's
not easy to neatly define them, put them into neat "boxes",
there will always be anomalies.
I don't think those temps are that arbitrary. -3c is supposed to represent the persistent snow cover line, and it's fairly accurate I think. The 22c threshold I don't remember exactly though it is roughly similar to your typical room temperature.
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Old 06-10-2012, 12:21 AM
 
Location: Top of the South, NZ
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tom77falcons View Post
The first one doesn't appear "dead" to me. Maybe they grow orange trees or banana in the back, lol, since citrus and banana grows in Charleston and the rest of the Lowcountry on south from there. This from a Charleston blog I read: baxter sez: Orange report

I'm getting sidetracked here, as I don't regard Charleston as anything other than solidly subtropical. "Dead" does sound a bit harsh. What I mean is both pics look a bit empty, could just be the the barren look is in style around there. I'm used to winter being a lot more colourful, and with longer grass and with more shrubs spilling on to sidewalks.

Good news about citrus there. I wouldn't want to live in a place without oranges.
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Old 06-10-2012, 04:31 AM
 
Location: Laurentia
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Joe90 View Post
I don't think that is a good example as it is the same climate. I can get a similar effect here,by looking out different windows. Both appear "dead" by my standards. No flowering plants, citrus, bananas etc, and the green grass is summer green, rather than winter green.
Interesting that you would say that (dead, empty, whatever). I guess that's a testament to just how warm NZ is in the winter. To my eyes it looks like spring or autumn; in one of the pictures most trees still have all their leaves! This landscape has the "dormant" look to me, though there is still a bit of green. Snow-covered landscapes are different so I didn't include them but they usually go with the territory (four seasons).
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Old 06-10-2012, 08:22 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Joe90 View Post
I don't understand why there is a summer heat requirement, it's not going to change the number of species NYC (for instance) can support.
I think it works well in the Southern Hemisphere to distinguish subtropical from eastcoast temperate, though maybe you disagree with some of those places being classified as temperate rather than subtropical.



Quote:
Originally Posted by MrMarbles View Post
The key feature of tropical climates is heat. Climates which have hot summers are tropical for at least a part of the year. Climates which are cool year-round are never tropical.
I think the key features of a tropical climate are year round warmth and summer heavy precipitation (excluding equatorial), which is one of the reasons why I think subtropical shouldn't include Mediterranean climates which have the opposite precipitation pattern.

What do Rome, Perth, etc. have in common with the tropics? At least with places like Brisbane you can see the connection.
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Old 06-10-2012, 08:43 AM
 
Location: Laurentia
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ttad View Post
I think the key features of a tropical climate are year round warmth and summer heavy precipitation (excluding equatorial), which is one of the reasons why I think subtropical shouldn't include Mediterranean climates which have the opposite precipitation pattern.
You have a point there . However, that wouldn't include the humid subtropical climates seeing as they're still wet in summertime. Plus, heavy precipitation in summer is the rule but there are exceptions even among true tropical climates. Honolulu is definitely a tropical climate, but it has its dry season in summer. This also goes for some other Hawaiian locations. There's also a few indisputably tropical spots in Sri Lanka that get most of their rain in winter. So I wouldn't say that summer rains are one of the key features of tropical-ness.

Under the Koeppen system the subtropical zone (Cfa, or warm temperate, or whatever you want to call it) has the key characteristics of having tropical-type summers (the 22C criterion) of significant length (4 months or more) plus winters that are too cool to be tropical but don't have persistent snow cover (-3C criterion which also works well with frozen ground criteria). That's the definition I follow, and for more on my thoughts you can see the thread where we've had the subtropical debate for some time now.

As for the usefulness of the 22C line, it isn't exactly arbitrary, although 21C or 23C will be borderline in any case (it's all about the best fit in my view). The 22C isotherm has a big impact on the prevailing vegetation types in the continental climates, seeing as it marks the boundary between the continental forest you might find in Chicago and the hemiboreal forest you might find in Quebec which features more boreal-type trees mixing in naturally.

It's also used to delineate between the subtropical climates and the maritime climates, which makes sense to me, at least as much as any other boundary. Places like New Zealand are too cool in winter to be tropical and they don't have any tropical-type summer heat to qualify as subtropical. Ditto for places like Eureka, California (if it wasn't dry in summer).
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Old 06-10-2012, 11:09 AM
 
641 posts, read 918,884 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MrMarbles View Post
I don't think those temps are that arbitrary. -3c is supposed to represent the persistent snow cover line, and it's fairly accurate I think. The 22c threshold I don't remember exactly though it is roughly similar to your typical room temperature.
I personally don't get this persistent snowcover stuff.

There are plenty of places in China and even western USA
that have tough time with persistent snow cover even when averaging
colder than the magical -3c. These places are very dry and very sunny
in winter, snow just doesn't stick around.

|
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Old 06-10-2012, 11:09 AM
 
Location: SE Michigan
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Koppen called Mediterranean climates "subtropical dry summer" for a reason. He was looking at vegetation. Most oceanic west coast climates have year-round rainfall that is fairly evenly distributed. As soon as you reach Csb zones, where summers become bone dry, the vegetation changes and becomes subtropical. Examples are broadleaf evergreen trees like the olive, madrone, manzanita, med. fan palm, etc. The defining characteristic of much of the plant life becomes its ability to survive summer drought. This is all caused by the subtropical high pressure systems that lie off the west coasts of continents around 30 degrees north (the same permanent high pressure systems that cause coastal deserts to form from around 25 to 30 degrees north on the west coasts of continents, e.g. The western Sahara in Africa, Baja California, the coastal desert of northern Chile, etc.)...That's why precipitation patterns (not temperatures) are the defining characteristic of med climates, and that's why Koppen considered them subtropical while regular temperate west coast climates are not. It's all about the weather patterns, precipitation, and resultant flora.
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Old 06-10-2012, 11:24 AM
 
Location: Laurentia
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Quote:
Originally Posted by burloak View Post
I personally don't get this persistent snowcover stuff.

There are plenty of places in China and even western USA
that have tough time with persistent snow cover even when averaging
colder than the magical -3c. These places are very dry and very sunny
in winter, snow just doesn't stick around.
For every place that is too dry to maintain a snowpack that's below -3C there's another place that averages above -3C but is wet enough to retain a snowpack. There is nothing magical about -3C, except that it's the best fit with the snow cover line. Plus most of those places in China average Dwa/Dwb/Dwc anyway, which is the dry winter version of the continental climate, and their nature is a bit different than the Laurentian Dfa/Dfb/Dfc climates. Plus you might be too strict as to what constitutes persistent snow cover; it doesn't have to be constant, it just has to be persistent, as in the snowpack might melt but it re-establishes itself in a few days and/or remnants stick around and so forth. Satellite images corroborate this notion. I am not aware of many places in the West that fit your description; most of these places such as Flagstaff and Denver average above -3C anyway, and the ski resort areas have no problem with snow and some of them average above -3C, so I don't think you have much of a case.
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Old 06-10-2012, 11:34 AM
 
Location: Top of the South, NZ
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The more subtropical a place is, the more plant species it should be able to support. It doesn't have much to do with summer heat (imo). Hot summers don't allow NYC to support more plant species than Eureka or here.

Flora shows the natural progression of warmest through to coolest climates.
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