The subtropics are the zones of the Earth immediately north and south of the tropic zone, which is bounded by the Tropic of Cancer and the Tropic of Capricorn, at latitude 23.5 ° north and south. The term 'subtropical' describes the climatic region found adjacent to the tropics, usually between 20 and 35 degrees latitude in both hemispheres, but occasionally found at slightly higher latitudes.

Trewartha's definition

According to climatologist Glenn G. Trewartha, a subtropical region should have at least eight months with a mean temperature of 10° C (50 °F) or above. His revision of Köppen climate classification assigns to such areas the letter C, while others zones encompassed in the original Köppen group C class would be considered part of group D.

John F. Griffiths' definition

The climatologist John F. Griffiths in his book "Applied climatology" described the subtropical zone as having a coldest month of between 6 °C (42.8 °F) and 18 °C (64.4 °F) and assigning to this group the letter B, while the original B group of Köppen taxonomy would be spread over the various temperature-based groups.


In subtropical climates the winters are relatively warm, but not as hot as the summer season. These climates rarely - if ever - see frost or snow, and plants such as palm, citrus and many broadleaf evergreens flourish, in contrast to the hardier deciduous and coniferous trees which dominate midlatitude climates. As one moves toward the tropical side the slight winter cool season disappears altogether, while at the polar threshold of the subtropics the winters become much cooler.

Rainfall patterns vary widely throughout the subtropics including hot deserts, savannas, monsoon forests, humid forests and the warmer parts of the Mediterranean climate zone. Subtropical regions include the southern third of California (Mediterranean type), the low deserts of the Southwest USA (hot arid type), the Gulf Coast and most of Florida (humid type), the southern Mediterranean and northern Sahara, northern India (monsoon), southeast China (humid), the middle part of South America (varied), and much of Australia (varied). Example of subtropical cities and areas include:
*Russia: Sochi
*Georgia: Batumi
*Turkey: Mersin, Antalya, Rize
*Australia: Brisbane and Sydney
*Middle East:Jerusalem, Baghdad, Kabul, and Islamabad
*Europe: Lisbon, Barcelona, Rome, Dubrovnik, Athens and Yalta
*USA:Savannah, Georgia, Houston, Texas, Charleston, South Carolina, Orlando, Florida, Tucson, Arizona
*Brazil: São Paulo, Curitiba, Florianópolis and Porto Alegre
*North Africa: Cairo
*South Africa: Durban and East London
*New Zealand: Auckland
*Uruguay: Bella Unión
*China: Hong Kong, Macau and Shanghai

ubtropical flora

ee also

*Humid subtropical
*Tropical rain forests
*Tropic of Cancer
*Tropic of Capricorn
*Geographical zone

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Look at other dictionaries:

  • subtropics — [sub′träp′iks] pl.n. subtropical regions …   English World dictionary

  • subtropics — noun plural Date: 1886 subtropical regions …   New Collegiate Dictionary

  • subtropics — /sub trop iks/, subtropical regions. [1895 90; SUB + TROPICS] * * * …   Universalium

  • subtropics — noun The region between the tropics and the temperate latitudes of the world …   Wiktionary

  • subtropics — Synonyms and related words: Antarctic Zone, Arctic Circle, Arctic Zone, Frigid Zones, Torrid Zone, Tropic of Cancer, Tropic of Capricorn, Variable Zones, climate, clime, equator, furnace, hell, horse latitudes, inferno, latitude, longitude,… …   Moby Thesaurus

  • subtropics — sub trop·ics || ‚sÊŒb trÉ‘pɪk / rÉ’p n. regions bordering the tropics, regions north of the tropic of Cancer or south of the tropic of Capricorn …   English contemporary dictionary

  • subtropics — plural noun the regions adjacent to or bordering on the tropics. Derivatives subtropical adjective …   English new terms dictionary

  • subtropics — sub·tropics …   English syllables

  • subtropics — sub•trop•ics [[t]sʌbˈtrɒp ɪks[/t]] n. pl. geo geg subtropical regions • Etymology: 1895–90 …   From formal English to slang

  • subtropics — /sʌbˈtrɒpɪks/ (say sub tropiks) plural noun subtropical regions …   Australian-English dictionary

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