• synonyms


[koh-nif-er-uh s, kuh-]
adjective Botany.
  1. belonging or pertaining to the conifers.Compare conifer(def 1).
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Origin of coniferous

First recorded in 1655–65; see origin at conifer, -ous
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for coniferous

Historical Examples

  • In transplanting of these coniferous trees, which are generally resinaceous, viz.

    Sylva, Vol. 1 (of 2)

    John Evelyn

  • Coniferous plants are abundant, many of them being peculiar to Japan.

    The Empire of the East

    H. B. Montgomery

  • The nests are most often found under the loosened bark on coniferous trees.

    The Bird Book

    Chester A. Reed

  • They are all pyramidal trees with flowers and fruits of the coniferous type.

    Trees Worth Knowing

    Julia Ellen Rogers

  • These include some of the most beautiful of coniferous trees.

    Trees Worth Knowing

    Julia Ellen Rogers

British Dictionary definitions for coniferous


  1. of, relating to, or belonging to the plant phylum ConiferophytaSee conifer
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Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Word Origin and History for coniferous


1660s, from conifer + -ous.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

coniferous in Science


  1. Any of various gymnosperms that bear their reproductive structures in cones and belong to the phylum Coniferophyta. Conifers evolved around 300 million years ago and, as a group, show many adaptations to drier and cooler environments. They are usually evergreen and often have drought-resistant leaves that are needle-shaped or scalelike. They depend on the wind to blow pollen produced by male cones to female cones, where fertilization takes place and seeds develop. Conifers are widely distributed, but conifer species dominate the northern forest biome known as the taiga. There are some 550 species of conifers, including the pines, firs, spruces, hemlocks, cypresses, junipers, yews, and redwoods. See more at pollination seed-bearing plant.
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Related formsconiferous adjective
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.