Article Title

North American Cycads

Document Type



As is well known the Cycadaceae constitutes a small section of the gymnospermous plants. They are therefore, related on the one hand to the Gnetaceae or joint-firs, and on the other to the Coniferae, the conifers, our familiar pines, cedars, firs and yews. The Cycads are, however, both in habit and structure quite unlike in many ways, all other existent plants. Nevertheless the fruit is borne in cones as in the Conifers, and their stems, such stems as they have, are full of a gummy, resinous (?) sap, and the general structure of the wood, the disposition of the medullary rays also resembles these features in some of the coarser grained larches. On the other hand some of the Cycads, notably the species of the genus Cycas, resemble in some respects the ferns, their leaves unrolling from the stem's top are circinate in vernation. To Saporta Cycads have the appearance of small, low palms, the trunk is so short and massive, supporting its crown of far-spreading leaves. Again the roots of most Cycads are poorly developed and resemble those of the Monocotyledones. Accordingly it may be said in a general way that Cycads are plants having leaves like the ferns, cones like the conifers, stems like the palms, and roots like lilies or grasses.

Publication Date


Journal Title

Proceedings of the Iowa Academy of Sciences




Pt. 4

First Page


Last Page



©1893 Iowa Academy of Science, Inc.



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