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[oh-ver-stawr-ee, -stohr-ee] /ˈoʊ vərˌstɔr i, -ˌstoʊr i/
noun, plural overstories.
the uppermost layer of foliage in a forest, forming the canopy.
Origin of overstory
1480-90, for an earlier sense; 1955-60 for current sense; over- + story2 Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for overstory
  • Often, development will remove all of the layers of vegetation except for the overstory trees.
  • Bryophyte cover was strongly affected with a nearly linear decline in relation to overstory cover reductions.
  • The primary overstory species are red oak, white oak, and hickory.
  • The overstory varies from moderately open to closed.
  • In major parts of these stands the understory vegetation was declining due to the density of the tree overstory.
  • Variable attributes change over time and may include seral stage, cover type, and overstory canopy cover.
  • Removal of the conifer overstory in a final harvest allows hardwood seedlings to grow to maturity.
  • Canby's dropwort prefers permanently flooded bays or wet pine savannahs with little or no overstory.
  • The overstory is harvested in two or three clearly defined stages scheduled several years apart.
  • The overstory serves to modify understory conditions, create a favorable environment for reproduction, and provide a seed source.

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