Definition of cultivate
1 : to prepare or prepare and use for the raising of crops <Some fields are cultivated while others lie fallow.>; also : to loosen or break up the soil about (growing plants)
2a : to foster the growth of <cultivate vegetables> <cultivate coffee>b : culture 2a <cultivate oysters for pearls>c : to improve by labor, care, or study : refine <cultivate the mind> < … cultivated a reputation as a hard-core wheeler-dealer … — Kit Boss>
4 : to seek the society of : make friends with <looking for influential people to cultivate as friends>
cultivatableplay \-ˌvā-tə-bəl\ adjective
Examples of cultivate in a sentence
Prehistoric peoples settled the area and began to cultivate the land.
Some of the fields are cultivated while others lie fallow.
a plant that is cultivated for its fruit
They survived by cultivating vegetables and grain.
He has carefully cultivated his image.
She cultivated a taste for fine wines.
Origin and Etymology of cultivate
Medieval Latin cultivatus, past participle of cultivare, from cultivus cultivable, from Latin cultus, past participle of colere —see cult
First Known Use: 1588
CULTIVATE Defined for English Language Learners
Definition of cultivate for English Language Learners
: to prepare and use (soil) for growing plants
: to grow and care for (plants)
: to grow or raise (something) under conditions that you can control
CULTIVATE Defined for Kids
Definition of cultivate for Students
1 : to prepare land for the raising of crops <cultivate a field>
2 : to raise or assist the growth of crops by tilling or by labor and care <cultivate corn>
3 : to improve or develop by careful attention, training, or study : devote time and thought to <He's trying to cultivate a better attitude.>
4 : to seek the company and friendship of <As soon as Johnny began to cultivate Dove, he was surprised at the response. — Esther Forbes, Johnny Tremain>
Seen and Heard
What made you want to look up cultivate? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).