Story: Kauri forest

Kauri cones

Kauri cones

The kauri tree has both male and female cones, formed from overlapping, spirally arranged scales. Male and female cones can grow on the same branch, and cones of different ages are often found on the same tree. Round female cones and finger-shaped male cones (left) are bright green in their early stages. As the male cone ripens it turns dark brown and releases pollen. The scales of the female cone (right) open back when it is ready to receive the pollen. This happens before the cone has fully matured, when it is still green. As it matures, the female cone darkens, and when fully ripe the scales drop off, allowing the winged seeds beneath them to be dispersed by the wind.

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Reference: 019601 (left) and 482304 (right)

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How to cite this page:

Joanna Orwin, 'Kauri forest - How and where kauri grows', Te Ara - the Encyclopedia of New Zealand, http://www.TeAra.govt.nz/en/photograph/10021/kauri-cones (accessed 17 October 2017)

Story by Joanna Orwin, published 24 Sep 2007