Quantcast
Merriam-Webster Logo
  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
  • Medical
  • Scrabble
  • Spanish Central
  • Learner's Dictionary

cactus

play
noun cac·tus \ˈkak-təs\

Simple Definition of cactus

  • : a plant that lives in the desert and that has many sharp points (called spines)

Full Definition of cactus

plural cac·ti play \-ˌtī, -(ˌ)tē\ or cac·tus·es also cactus

  1. :  any of a family (Cactaceae, the cactus family) of plants that have succulent stems and branches with scales or spines instead of leaves and are found especially in dry areas (as deserts)

Origin of cactus

New Latin, genus name, from Latin, cardoon, from Greek kaktos


First Known Use: 1767

Other Seed Plant Terms

Rhymes with cactus


CACTUS Defined for Kids

cactus

play
noun cac·tus \ˈkak-təs\

Definition of cactus

plural cac·ti \-ˌtī, -tē\ or cac·tus·es

  1. :  any of a large group of flowering plants of dry regions that have thick juicy stems and branches with scales or spines




Learn More about cactus


Seen and Heard

What made you want to look up cactus? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).

WORD OF THE DAY

February 11, 2016

the holder of an office

Get Word of the Day daily email!

WORD GAMES

Take a 3-minute break and test your skills!

image33683556

How much does a batman (the Turkish unit of measurement) weigh?

2.2 pounds 196.5 pounds 16.96 pounds 100 pounds
Name That Thing

10 quick questions: hear them, spell them, and see how your skills compare to the crowd.

TAKE THE QUIZ
SCRABBLE® Sprint

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ