Desert poplar forest approaches viewing season
The desert poplar forest in Alshaa League is a wondrous sight to behold. This picture was taken on Oct 13, 2017. [Photo/Xinhua]
The desert poplar forest in Alshaa League -- in North China’s Inner Mongolia autonomous region -- will enter its viewing season on Oct 3, which will last until Oct 25, according to a forecast from the league’s meteorological department.
The viewing season has been slightly altered from that of previous years. Normally, Oct 7-22 is said to provide the best viewing window.
Experts say the forest landscape viewing season is divided into several periods.
When the proportion of yellow leaves reaches more than 50 percent, the forest enters the viewing period. When the proportion of yellow leaves reaches more than 80 percent, it enters the best viewing period; and when the proportion of fallen leaves reaches more than 80 percent, the viewing period is over.
The Desert poplar, or populus euphratica, is a species of poplar tree in the willow family. It is a bushy, deciduous tree whose trunk is often twisted and crooked. It usually grows in desert oases. Though it prefers wet climates, it is resistant to drought, cold, salinity, wind and sandstorms.
There is a saying that describes its strong vitality: “Live for a thousand years until death, stand for another thousand years until fallen and exist for another thousand years until rotten.”
The desert poplar forest scenic area in Alshaa League is one of the three remaining desert poplar reserves in the world. It covers a total area of 54,000 mu (3,600 hectares), possessing the most thousand-year-old desert poplar trees and the most well-preserved desert poplar forest in the world.