Volcanic desert

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Landmannalaugar in south-central Iceland is an example of a volcanic desert

A volcanic desert is an area devoid of vegetation because of volcanic activity. Usually the term is applied to larger areas such as the Highlands of Iceland or Cordón Caulle in Chile. Volcanic deserts may have enough precipitation to sustain vegetation, but due to repeated covering of tephra after eruptions and high percolation and infiltration rates of water, vegetation is scarce. In addition to this volcanic desert shows often poor or little soil formation due to slow chemical weathering caused by cold climate or resistant felsic tephra.