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Gymnosperm, smaller of the 2 main classes of seed-bearing plants, the other being the angiosperm. Gymnosperms are characterized by having naked seeds usually formed on open scales produced in cones. All are perennial plants and most are evergreen. There are several orders, the main ones being the Cycadales, the cycads or sago palms; the Coniferales, including pine, larch, fir, and redwood; the Gingoales, the ginkgo; and the Gnetales, tropical shrubs and woody vines.

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21st Century Webster's Family Encyclopedia21st Century Webster's Family Encyclopedia - Grand Rapids to Hadron