One of the high points of early spring is the emergence of exquisitely colored female (seed-bearing) cones on larch (Larix occidentalis) trees. When we conjure an image of a conifer cone, we tend to think in shades of brown. But, when most conifers break bud in the spring, the young female cones dazzle; everything from deep purple to brilliant pink to crimson is on display.
The female flowers (or cones) of larches are erect, small, 1–9 cm (1⁄2–3+1⁄2 in) long, green or purple, brown in ripening and lignify (called now strobilus) 5–8 months after pollination; in about half the species the bract scales are long and visible, and in the others, short and hidden between the seed scales. Those native to northern regions have small cones (1–3 cm or 1⁄2–1 in) with short bracts
EF 100mm macro, MR-14EX flash; f/22 @ 1/60 sec, ISO 100