Leslie Holdridge
Leslie Rensselaer Holdridge

September 29, 1907
DiedJune 19, 1999(1999-06-19) (aged 91)
Alma materH. B.S. in Forestry, University of Maine, 1931, postgrad., 1931-32
M.S. in Ecology, University of Michigan, 1946, Ph.D., 1947.
Scientific career
InstitutionsCosta Rica Institute of Technology

Leslie Ransselaer Holdridge (September 29, 1907 – June 19, 1999) was an American botanist and climatologist. He was the father of composer Lee Holdridge as well as the father of Leslie A. Holdridge, Lorena Holdridge, Marbella Holdridge, Marly Holdridge, Marisela Holdridge, Thania Holdridge, John Holdridge, Ida Holdridge, Reuseland Holdridge, Leythy J. Holdridge and youngest son Gregory Holdridge whom he fathered with Costa Rican Clara Luz Melendez.


Main article: Holdridge life zones

Diagram of life zone classifications.
Diagram of life zone classifications.

In his famous 1947 paper,[1] he defined "life zones" using three indicators:

  1. Mean annual biotemperature (average temperature, after data values below 0 °C or above 30 °C have been eliminated)
  2. Total annual precipitation
  3. The ratio of mean annual potential evapotranspiration to mean total annual precipitation.[1]

Holdridge participated in the Cinchona Missions, a United States effort to search for natural sources of quinine during World War II.[2]

See also


  1. ^ a b Holdridge, L.R. (1947). "Determination of world plant formations from simple climatic data". Science. 105 (2727): 367–8. Bibcode:1947Sci...105..367H. doi:10.1126/science.105.2727.367. PMID 17800882.
  2. ^ Steere, W. (1945). The Cinchona-Bark Industry of South America. The Scientific Monthly, 61(2), 114-126. Retrieved from http://www.jstor.org/stable/18623