Did You Know?
A low-growing plant with a corm, the crocus belongs to the iris family. There are about 75 species of crocus. They are native to the Alps, southern Europe, and the Mediterranean and are widely grown for their cuplike blooms in early spring or fall. The spring-flowering sorts have a floral tube so long that the ovary is below ground, sheltered from climatic changes. Saffron comes from a species of crocus that is native to western Asia. The alpine crocus is the chief ancestor of the common garden crocus.
Origin and Etymology of crocus
Middle English, the saffron plant, from Latin, from Greek krokos, of Semitic origin; akin to Akkadian kurkānū saffron
First Known Use: 14th century
CROCUS Defined for English Language Learners
Definition of crocus for English Language Learners
: a small purple, yellow, or white flower that blooms in the early spring
CROCUS Defined for Kids
Definition of crocus for Students
: a small plant having grasslike leaves and colorful flowers that bloom in the spring
Seen and Heard
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