Deserts and semi-deserts cover roughly a third of the entire landmass of the Earth. A huge area of our planet is thus defined as an arid region.
But what exactly are arid regions and are they similar everywhere?
In general, landscapes where only highly specialised plants or no plants at all can grow due to their extreme dryness are referred to as arid regions.
Therefore, cold deserts also fall into this category.
Although they have water, it is frozen due to the cold and thus not available for plants. In addition, the lack of vegetation is caused by the lack of warmth.
The marginal zones of the polar regions Arctic and Antarctica i.a. count among the cold deserts, but also the alpine cold deserts of high mountains.
The picture is entirely different with arid deserts.
In arid deserts, little precipitation and a high rate of evaporation are mainly responsible for the lack of an extensive vegetation cover.
Most arid deserts stretch out around the globe in two broad dry belts north and south of the equator.