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


noun phlo·em \ˈflō-ˌem\

Definition of phloem

  1. :  a complex tissue in the vascular system of higher plants that consists mainly of sieve tubes and elongated parenchyma cells usually with fibers and that functions in translocation and in support and storage — compare xylem

Origin and Etymology of phloem

German, from Greek phloios, phloos bark; perhaps akin to Greek phlein to teem, abound, phlyein, phlyzein to boil over — more at fluid

First Known Use: 1875

Rhymes with phloem

Learn More about phloem

Seen and Heard

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