Some conifers can be recognised by their distinctive cones.  For others the cone tells you what group of closely-related conifers the tree belongs to.  For example, the cones of Pines look quite different from those of Cedars. Use this option to select a conifer group (genus), then use other features such as needles or bark to identify the specific tree in the genus. Click on a button to get photos of the cones of individual species where appropriate – Pines, Spruces, Firs and Cypresses. Click on the names in red to get info on tree species. To identify conifers from the arrangement of their needles click on the button marked Conifer Leaf Key. To learn more about cones click on the button marked Conifer Life Cycle. Click on any photo to enlarge it.

Scots Pine cone

Arolla Pine, Austrian Pine, Bhutan Pine, Bishop Pine, Corsican Pine, Lodgepole Pine, Monterey Pine, Scots Pine,    Stone Pine, Weymouth Pine

Atlas Cedar Cone


 Atlas Cedar,    Cedar of  Lebanon,  Deodar

Norway Spruce Cone

Colorado Spruce, Norway Spruce, Oriental Spruce, Serbian Spruce, Sitka Spruce

Spanish Fir Cone

Caucasian Fir, European Silver Fir, Grand Fir, Noble Fir, Spanish Fir


Italian Cypress Cone

Italian Cypress, Leyland Cypress, Lawson Cypress, Monterey Cypress, Smooth Arizona Cypress

Common Juniper Cone


Chinese Juniper, Common Juniper,

Common Yew, Irish Yew

Douglas Fir cone

Douglas Fir – note 3-pronged bract (circled) unique to this species