any gymnospermous plant of the order Cycadales, intermediate in appearance between ferns and the palms, many species having a thick, unbranched, columnar trunk bearing a crown of large, leathery, pinnate leaves.
- cy·cad·like, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023
How to use cycad in a sentence
Abundant now, as throughout the Mesozoic, were cycads — palm-like plants with seed-producing cones.
Animals like dinosaurs and plants like cycads, says Ruffell, were “waiting in the wings” to seize their opportunity.A volcano-induced rainy period made Earth’s climate dinosaur-friendly | Megan Sever | September 30, 2021 | Science News
Therapods had a varied diet, while herbivores chowed down on ferns, cycads, and conifers, to name some ancient plants that are still around today.
As dinosaurs lumbered through the humid cycad forests of ancient South America 180 million years ago, primeval lizards scurried, unnoticed, beneath their feet.
It was thickly covered with a fine cycad which grows amongst the rocks overhanging the sea.Wanderings Among South Sea Savages And in Borneo and the Philippines | H. Wilfrid Walker
At Treasury Island I found a solitary cycad at a height of a thousand feet above the sea.The Solomon Islands and Their Natives | H. B. (Henry Brougham) Guppy
Bowenia, an Australian cycad, is peculiar in having bi-pinnate fronds (fig. 5).
Palms are so like cycads that we may regard them as the descendants of some cycad type.The Elements of Geology | William Harmon Norton
Opposite me is a funny old cycad, not branched at all but bent.A Journal from Japan | Marie Carmichael Stopes
British Dictionary definitions for cycad
any tropical or subtropical gymnosperm plant of the phylum Cycadophyta, having an unbranched stem with fernlike leaves crowded at the top: See also sago palm (def. 2)
- cycadaceous, adjective
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
Scientific definitions for cycad
Any of various evergreen plants that live in tropical and subtropical regions, have large feathery leaves, and resemble palm trees in that most leaves cluster around the top of the stem. Cycads are gymnosperms that bear conelike reproductive structures at the top of the stem, with male and female cones borne on different plants. Cycads were common in many parts of the Earth during the Jurassic Period and survive today in about 250 species. Sago palms are cycads.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.