The four major phyla of the gymnosperms

Key Points

-Gymnosperms are a diverse group of plants the protect their seeds with cones and do not produce flowers or fruits.
- Gymnosperms consist of four main phyla: the Coniferophyta, Cycadophyta, Gingkophyta and Gnetophyta.

Coniferophyta and Cycadophyta

  • -Conifers ( Coniferophyta) are the dominant plant of the gymnosperms, having needle-like leaves and living in areas where the weather is cold and dry.

    -Cycads (Cycadophyta) live in warm climates, have large, compound leaves, and are unusual in that they are pollinated by beetles rather than wind.

  • Gingkophyta and Gnetophyta

    -Gingko biloba (Gingkophyta) is the only remaining species of the Gingkophyta and is usually resistant to pollution.

    -Gnetophytes (Gnetophyta) are the gymnosperms believed to be most closely related to the angiosperms because of the presence of vessel elements within their stems
    Gymnosperm Notes


    -Earle, Christopher J.. "Gymnosperms" Biology. 2002. 15 May. 2016

    -Boundless. “Diversity of Gymnosperms.” Boundless Biology. Boundless, 13 Apr. 2016. Retrieved 16 May. 2016