banyan

noun ban·yan \ ˈban-yən , -ˌyan \

Definition of banyan

plural banyans
: a large fig tree (Ficus benghalensis) native to India and Pakistan that starts as an epiphyte and has spreading branches which send out aerial roots that grow down to the ground and form secondary trunks around the host tree
  • The banyan kills the host tree by preventing its trunk from growing. After the host dies, the banyan continues to grow. Eventually, one tree appears to be an entire forest.
  • National Geographic World

Recent Examples of banyan from the Web

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Illustration of banyan

illustration of banyan

Origin and Etymology of banyan

earlier banyan Gujarati trader, from Portuguese banean, probably from Tamil vāniyan trader, from Sanskrit vāṇija; from a tree of the species in Iran under which such traders conducted business


BANYAN Defined for English Language Learners

banyan

Definition of banyan for English Language Learners

  • : an Indian tree with long branches that send roots down to the ground forming secondary trunks


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