Evergreen trees grow from small seedlings to giant sizes that are more than 100 feet tall. Evergreens have needles instead of leaves. The green needles stay on the tree all year.

Pine trees
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evergreens can grow to more than 100 feet tall

Coniferous

Spruce branches with cones close-up
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pine cones contain seeds that can grow to be pine trees

Evergreen trees are conifers, which means that cones grow on the branches. Seeds form inside of the cones. Small seeds fall out of the cones, and then animals and wind can carry them to another location where they will sprout and grow.

Types

Winter mountain fir forest landscape
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firs are one type of evergreen tree

Cedar, pine, spruce, fir, cypress and hemlock are all evergreen trees. The trees have a nice smell and short, prickly needles or clumps of long, thin needles.

Function

Bird with offspring in nest
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birds use evergreens for shelter

Evergreen trees are used by birds and animals for shelter and food. People need evergreen trees for shade, wood and building supplies. Christmas tree farmers grow and sell evergreen trees.

Facts for Kids

golden drops
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evergreen pitch

Native people have used evergreen pitch as a soothing medication and for sunburn prevention. The tips on the young branches of some evergreens provide vitamin C. These tips can be eaten by someone who is lost and in survival mode.