flow·​er | \ ˈflau̇(-ə)r How to pronounce flower (audio) \

Definition of flower

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1a : the specialized part of an angiospermous plant that occurs singly or in clusters, possesses whorls of often colorful petals or sepals, and bears the reproductive structures (such as stamens or pistils) involved in the development of seeds and fruit : blossom
b : a cluster of small flowers growing closely together that resembles and is often viewed as a single flower : inflorescence a hydrangea flower
c : a plant grown or valued for its flowers planted flowers in the front yard
d : a cut stem of a plant with its flower a bouquet of flowers
e : bloom entry 2 sense 1b lilacs in full flower
2a : the best part or example the flower of our youth
b : the finest most vigorous period wasted the flower of their lives
c : a state of blooming or flourishing in full flower
3 flowers plural : a finely divided powder produced especially by condensation or sublimation flowers of sulfur


flowered; flowering; flowers

Definition of flower (Entry 2 of 2)

intransitive verb

1a : develop flowered into young womanhood
2 : to produce flowers : blossom

transitive verb

1 : to cause to bear flowers
2 : to decorate with flowers or floral designs

Illustration of flower

Illustration of flower


cross section of flower 1b: 1 filament, 2 anther, 3 stigma, 4 style, 5 petal, 6 ovary, 7 sepal, 8 pedicel, 9 stamen, 10 pistil, 11 perianth

In the meaning defined above

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Other Words from flower


flowered \ ˈflau̇(-​ə)rd How to pronounce flower (audio) \ adjective
flowerful \ ˈflau̇(-​ə)r-​fəl How to pronounce flower (audio) \ adjective
flowerless \ ˈflau̇(-​ə)r-​ləs How to pronounce flower (audio) \ adjective
flowerlike \ ˈflau̇(-​ə)r-​ˌlīk How to pronounce flower (audio) \ adjective


flowerer \ ˈflau̇(-​ə)r-​ər How to pronounce flower (audio) \ noun

Synonyms for flower

Synonyms: Noun

Synonyms: Verb

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Examples of flower in a Sentence

Noun We planted flowers in the garden. He sent her a bouquet of flowers. He wore a single flower in his lapel. Verb This tree flowers in early spring. The plant will flower every other year. His genius flowered at the university. a political movement that began to flower during the 1960s
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun As the first wave of the pandemic raged in India, Modi called for festivals of light and asked the air force to dispatch helicopters to shower hospitals with flower petals. Time, 28 June 2021 Deepak had adorned a nearby blanket with flower petals and photos of the couple from over the years. Alexandra Macon, Vogue, 22 June 2021 Some were inspired by sunlight and phenomena like the Big Bang, while others imitate the colors and textures of flower petals and butterfly wings. CNN, 3 June 2021 Stefano Morasso twists into vases and cups on Giudecca island; in the delicate cicchetti snacks sprinkled with flower petals at wine bar Schiavi; and in the masterpieces by Titian and Tintoretto that seem to lurk quietly in every other church. Julia Buckley, Travel + Leisure, 18 May 2021 Indy10 BLM will gather at Eagle Creek Park to release flower petals and messages to represent healing, as requested by Reed's family. Rashika Jaipuriar, The Indianapolis Star, 5 May 2021 The students danced so hard that the concrete floor was covered in flower petals from their corsages and boutonnieres by the end of the night. Courtney Tanner, The Salt Lake Tribune, 1 May 2021 Bright flower petals deftly placed on top of the cake delivered a subtle perfume. Paul Stephen, San Antonio Express-News, 27 Apr. 2021 In addition to heavy impasto, Aguirre further thickened the surface of the painting by applying scrapings of paint from his palette that curl like flower petals or snippets of ribbons. Steven Litt, cleveland, 18 Apr. 2021 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb Heavily infected leaves may curl upward and shoots typically do not flower. oregonlive, 23 May 2021 Day-neutral varieties — which refers to a plant's light sensitivity — will flower and fruit all summer long. Beth Dooley Special To The Star Tribune, Star Tribune, 23 June 2021 The clusters of fragrant white or pink blooms started appearing in mid-May and flower through mid-June. Janet B. Carson, Arkansas Online, 29 May 2021 Geraniums, petunias, and calibrachoas thrive in full-sun areas and will flower all season long, according to Mast. Kelsey Clark, Glamour, 18 May 2021 In about two to three years, the plant should flower, usually in March, and have a ready-to-eat fruit five months later. Tom Maccubbin, orlandosentinel.com, 17 Apr. 2021 As the bulbs form and grow several inches in diameter, they can be moved to a final location to flower in about three years. Tom Maccubbin, orlandosentinel.com, 1 May 2021 Hellebores that are planted in late spring and will likely not flower until next spring. Tim Johnson, chicagotribune.com, 10 Apr. 2021 Portland’s parks and gardens will continue to flower magnificently over the course of the season, offering locals a chance to get outside and take in a fresh splash of color. oregonlive, 24 Mar. 2021

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'flower.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of flower


13th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a


13th century, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense 1a

History and Etymology for flower

Noun and Verb

Middle English flour flower, best of anything, flour, from Anglo-French flur, flour, flaur, from Latin flor-, flos — more at blow

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Time Traveler for flower

Time Traveler

The first known use of flower was in the 13th century

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Dictionary Entries Near flower

flow diagram



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Statistics for flower

Last Updated

22 Jul 2021

Cite this Entry

“Flower.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/flower. Accessed 29 Jul. 2021.

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More Definitions for flower



English Language Learners Definition of flower

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: the part of a plant that is often brightly colored, that usually lasts a short time, and from which the seed or fruit develops
: a small plant that is grown for its beautiful flowers
: a cut stem of a plant with its flower



English Language Learners Definition of flower (Entry 2 of 2)

: to produce flowers
: to develop or grow in a successful way


flow·​er | \ ˈflau̇-ər How to pronounce flower (audio) \

Kids Definition of flower

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a plant part that produces seed
2 : a small plant grown chiefly for its showy flowers
3 : the state of bearing flowers in full flower
4 : the best part or example in the flower of youth

Other Words from flower

flowered \ -​ərd \ adjective
flowerless \ -​ər-​ləs \ adjective


flowered; flowering

Kids Definition of flower (Entry 2 of 2)

More from Merriam-Webster on flower

Nglish: Translation of flower for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of flower for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about flower


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