Return to the Life Cycles - Plants & Animals Index

Pine Tree Life Cycle (Gymnosperm)

Pine Tree Life Cycle (Gymnosperm)

Pine trees are in a group of plants called Gymnosperms. This means "naked seed." That is because, unlike a flowering plant, the seeds of pine trees are not inside a protective, fleshy fruit. Think of how an apple protects its seeds inside its fleshy body. A gymnosperm does not have that. 

A pine tree's seeds are not inside a fruit, like an apple but out in the air attached to a pinecone. When the pollen from a male pine cone floats on the wind and reaches a female pinecone, it fertilizes cone so seeds can grow, When the seeds are ready the pine tree will drop the cone to the forest floor.

An animal, like a squirrel, will take the pinecone apart to eat the seeds. Many will fall to the ground. Some may have a chance to sprout and grow. If just one of those seeds grow into a pine tree, the parent tree has been successful raising young!

The cycle begins over again!


Pine Tree Life Cycle (Gymnosperm)

To make black and white copies for your whole class, see the copy-friendly version below.

Pine Tree Life Cycle (Gymnosperm)

Recommended Books and Products  

For plant and animal identification in the Northeastern U.S. and Canada (also contains common mammals, flowers, trees, reptiles, amphibians and insects): Ask your librarian for Adirondack Nature Guide and Vermont Nature Guide (Pinto Press)

Pine Tree Life Cycle (Gymnosperm)


click here

Citing This Reference

When you research information you must cite the reference. Citing for websites is different from citing from books, magazines and periodicals. The style of citing shown here is from the MLA Style Citations (Modern Language Association).

When citing a WEBSITE the general format is as follows.
Author Last Name, First Name(s). "Title: Subtitle of Part of Web Page, if appropriate." Title: Subtitle: Section of Page if appropriate. Sponsoring/Publishing Agency, If Given. Additional significant descriptive information. Date of Electronic Publication or other Date, such as Last Updated. Day Month Year of access <URL>.

All text on Exploring Nature was written by author, Sheri Amsel

Here is an example of citing this page:
Amsel, Sheri. “Life Cycles - Plants & Animals.” Pine Tree Life Cycle (Gymnosperm). Exploring Nature Educational Resource. © 2005 - 2014. August 19, 2014. <>