germinate

verb
ger·​mi·​nate | \ ˈjər-mə-ˌnāt How to pronounce germinate (audio) \
germinated; germinating

Definition of germinate

transitive verb

: to cause to sprout or develop

intransitive verb

1 : to come into being : evolve before Western civilization began to germinate— A. L. Kroeber
2 : to begin to grow : sprout waiting for the seeds to germinate

Keep scrolling for more

Other Words from germinate

germination \ ˌjər-​mə-​ˈnā-​shən How to pronounce germination (audio) \ noun
germinative \ ˈjər-​mə-​ˌnā-​tiv How to pronounce germinative (audio) , -​mə-​nə-​ \ adjective

Examples of germinate in a Sentence

methods used by gardeners to germinate seeds
Recent Examples on the Web Keep moist and fresh seed should germinate within 14-21 days. Tom Maccubbin, orlandosentinel.com, "Fruiting pineapple plants need full sun, moisture, fertilizer," 19 Oct. 2019 That probably means that the nutrients in the fertilizer would be wasted or else utilized by the germinating winter weeds. Calvin Finch, ExpressNews.com, "Your fall and winter lawn care guide for San Antonio," 26 Sep. 2019 Zinnias also happen to be extremely easy to germinate from seed and do not have to be started so early that they would be considered difficult. Jeff Lowenfels, Anchorage Daily News, "I was wrong about the zinnias. So wrong.," 5 Sep. 2019 Seeds of Miner’s lettuce (pictured; sometimes called Indian lettuce) germinate, Mediterranean-style, with the fall rains. Pam Peirce, SFChronicle.com, "Plant now: A Mediterranean garden for the fall," 6 Sep. 2019 The spores attach to the ant and germinate, spreading through the host's body via long tendrils called mycelia. Jennifer Ouellette, Ars Technica, "Zombifying fungus bypasses the brain to make ants its puppets, study finds," 17 July 2019 Seeds excavated from a monastery in Denmark were dated to be 600 years old and 11 of them germinated. oregonlive.com, "Pull unsightly weeds as they pop or desired garden plants will suffer," 13 July 2019 The expectation is that some of those seeds will fall onto open, fertile soil and germinate, establishing the next generation of 3,000-year-old behemoths. Los Angeles Times, "California fire mystery: No major summer brush fires after years of record destruction," 22 Aug. 2019 What Cooley had envisioned as freeing had become an albatross during a period when the women’s liberation movement and Title IX were germinating. Britni De La Cretaz, Longreads, "Flagrant Foul: Benching Teen Moms Before Title IX," 14 Aug. 2019

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

See More

First Known Use of germinate

1610, in the meaning defined at transitive sense

History and Etymology for germinate

Latin germinatus, past participle of germinare to sprout, from germin-, germen bud, germ

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about germinate

Statistics for germinate

Last Updated

18 Nov 2019

Time Traveler for germinate

The first known use of germinate was in 1610

See more words from the same year

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for germinate

germinate

verb
How to pronounce germinate (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of germinate

of a seed : to begin to grow
: to cause (a seed) to begin to grow

germinate

verb
ger·​mi·​nate | \ ˈjər-mə-ˌnāt How to pronounce germinate (audio) \
germinated; germinating

Kids Definition of germinate

: to begin to grow : sprout She patiently waited for the seeds to germinate.

germinate

verb
ger·​mi·​nate | \ ˈjər-mə-ˌnāt How to pronounce germinate (audio) \
germinated; germinating

Medical Definition of germinate

transitive verb

: to cause to sprout or develop

intransitive verb

: to begin to grow : sprout

Other Words from germinate

germination \ ˌjər-​mə-​ˈnā-​shən How to pronounce germination (audio) \ noun

Keep scrolling for more

Comments on germinate

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

WORD OF THE DAY

the exactly right word or phrasing

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Pass the Little Ribbons: A Pasta Word Quiz

  • rotelle pasta
  • Match the pasta to its meaning in English: Rotelle
Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?

TAKE THE QUIZ
Dictionary Devil

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ
Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!