plant

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English[edit]

Etymology[edit]

Old English plante (young tree or shrub, herb newly planted), fom Latin planta (sprout, shoot, cutting). Broader sense of "any vegetable life, vegetation generally" is from French plante.

The verb is from Middle English planten, from Old English plantian (to plant), from Latin plantare, later influenced by Old French planter. Compare also Dutch planten (to plant), German pflanzen (to plant), Swedish planta (to plant), Icelandic planta (to plant).

Pronunciation[edit]

Noun[edit]

plant (plural plants)

  1. An organism that is not an animal, especially an organism capable of photosynthesis. Typically a small or herbaceous organism of this kind, rather than a tree.
    • 2013 May-June, Katrina G. Claw, “Rapid Evolution in Eggs and Sperm”, American Scientist, volume 101, number 3, page 217: 
      In plants, the ability to recognize self from nonself plays an important role in fertilization, because self-fertilization will result in less diverse offspring than fertilization with pollen from another individual. Many genes with reproductive roles also have antibacterial and immune functions, which indicate that the threat of microbial attack on the sperm or egg may be a major influence on rapid evolution during reproduction.
    The garden had a couple of trees, and a cluster of colourful plants around the border.
  2. (botany) An organism of the kingdom Plantae; now specifically, a living organism of the Embryophyta (land plants) or of the Chlorophyta (green algae), a eukaryote that includes double-membraned chloroplasts in its cells containing chlorophyll a and b, or any organism closely related to such an organism.
  3. (ecology) Now specifically, a multicellular eukaryote that includes chloroplasts in its cells, which have a cell wall.
  4. (proscribed as biologically inaccurate) Any creature that grows on soil or similar surfaces, including plants and fungi.
  5. A factory or other industrial or institutional building or facility.
  6. An object placed surreptitiously in order to cause suspicion to fall upon a person.
    That gun's not mine! It's a plant! I've never seen it before!
  7. Anyone assigned to behave as a member of the public during a covert operation (as in a police investigation).
  8. A person, placed amongst an audience, whose role is to cause confusion, laughter etc.
  9. (snooker) A play in which the cue ball knocks one (usually red) ball onto another, in order to pot the second; a set.
    • 2008, Phil Yates, The Times, April 28 2008:
      O’Sullivan risked a plant that went badly astray, splitting the reds.
  10. A large piece of machinery, such as the kind used in earthmoving or construction.
  11. (obsolete) A young tree; a sapling; hence, a stick or staff.
    • Dryden
      a plant of stubborn oak
  12. (obsolete) The sole of the foot.
    • Ben Jonson
    • knotty legs and plants of clay
  13. (dated, slang) A plan; a swindle; a trick.
    • Charles Dickens
      It wasn't a bad plant, that of mine, on Fikey.
  14. An oyster which has been bedded, in distinction from one of natural growth.
  15. (US, dialect) A young oyster suitable for transplanting.

Usage notes[edit]

The scientific definition of what organisms should be considered plants changed dramatically during the 20th century. Bacteria, algae, and fungi are no longer considered plants by those who study them. Many textbooks do not reflect the most current thinking on classification.

Derived terms[edit]

Translations[edit]

The translations below need to be checked and inserted above into the appropriate translation tables, removing any numbers. Numbers do not necessarily match those in definitions. See instructions at Help:How to check translations.

Verb[edit]

plant (third-person singular simple present plants, present participle planting, simple past and past participle planted)

  1. (transitive) To place (a seed or plant) in soil or other substrate in order that it may live and grow.
  2. (transitive) To place (an object, or sometimes a person), often with the implication of intending deceit.
    That gun's not mine! It was planted there by the real murderer!
  3. (transitive) To place or set something firmly or with conviction.
    Plant your feet firmly and give the rope a good tug.
    to plant cannon against a fort; to plant a flag; to plant one's feet on solid ground
    • 2011 January 15, Sam Sheringham, “Chelsea 2 - 0 Blackburn Rovers”, BBC:
      First Anelka curled a shot wide from just outside the box, then Lampard planted a header over the bar from Bosingwa's cross.
  4. To place in the ground.
    • 2007, Richard Laymon, Savage, page 118:
      Sarah, she kissed each of her grandparents on the forehead. They were planted in a graveyard behind the church.
  5. To furnish or supply with plants.
    to plant a garden, an orchard, or a forest
  6. To engender; to generate; to set the germ of.
    • Shakespeare
      It engenders choler, planteth anger.
  7. To furnish with a fixed and organized population; to settle; to establish.
    to plant a colony
    • Francis Bacon
      planting of countries like planting of woods
  8. To introduce and establish the principles or seeds of.
    to plant Christianity among the heathen
  9. To set up; to install; to instate.
    • Shakespeare
      We will plant some other in the throne.

Derived terms[edit]

Related terms[edit]

Translations[edit]

See also[edit]


Danish[edit]

Verb[edit]

plant

  1. Imperative of plante.

Dutch[edit]

Pronunciation[edit]

Etymology[edit]

From Middle Dutch plante, from Latin planta.[1] Doublette with clan (clan, tribe).

Noun[edit]

plant f (plural planten, diminutive plantje n)

  1. plant (organism)
  2. cabbage, vegetable (person with severe brain damage)

Derived terms[edit]

Verb[edit]

plant

  1. first-, second- and third-person singular present indicative of planten
  2. imperative of planten
  3. second- and third-person singular present indicative of plannen
  4. (archaic) plural imperative of plannen

References[edit]

  1. ^ M. Philippa - Etymologisch Woordenboek van het Nederlands, Amsterdam University Press 2009

German[edit]

Verb[edit]

plant

  1. Third-person singular present of planen.
  2. Second-person plural present of planen.
  3. Imperative plural of planen.

Haitian Creole[edit]

Etymology[edit]

From French plante (plant).

Noun[edit]

plant

  1. plant (organism)

Norwegian Nynorsk[edit]

Adjective[edit]

plant n

  1. neuter form of plan

Old Welsh[edit]

Etymology[edit]

From Latin planta.

Noun[edit]

plant ?

  1. children

Descendants[edit]


Swedish[edit]

Adjective[edit]

plant

  1. absolute indefinite neuter form of plan.

Welsh[edit]

Etymology[edit]

From Old Welsh plant, from Latin planta.

Pronunciation[edit]

Noun[edit]

plant m (singulative plentyn)

  1. children

Mutation[edit]

Welsh mutation
radical soft nasal aspirate
plant blant mhlant phlant