ni·​co·​ti·​a·​na ni-ˌkō-shē-ˈa-nə How to pronounce nicotiana (audio) -ˈä-nə How to pronounce nicotiana (audio)
: any of several tobaccos (such as Nicotiana alata) grown for their showy flowers

Example Sentences

Recent Examples on the Web In my garden, dill and nicotiana take top honors for excess. Margaret Roach, New York Times, 28 Apr. 2020 Other annuals that self-sow are Verbena bonariensis (tall verbena), nicotiana, calendula and various poppies (including the breadseed or opium poppy, Papaver somniferum). Margaret Roach, New York Times, 28 Apr. 2020 Flowers to start: Asters, nicotiana, cleome, ice plant, zinnia, salpiglossis, schizanthus, nigella, phlox, nemesia, marigold, nasturtiums Geese, seagulls, thrushes: This is the week! Jeff Lowenfels, Anchorage Daily News, 9 Apr. 2020 Among flowers, good bets are breadseed or ladybird poppies, California poppies, foxglove, nigella, columbine, nicotiana, bachelor’s buttons, cosmos, coreopsis, calendula and scabiosa. Pam Peirce,, 6 July 2018 Try planting dahlia, French marigold, nicotiana, evening primrose, thyme, raspberry, or honeysuckle. Emily O'brien, Good Housekeeping, 20 Oct. 2016 Indicator proteins glow under ultraviolet light on the leaves of the nicotiana benthamiana plant, which is a close relative of tobacco, as a means to assess the success of bacteria spread at Icon Genetics, August 14, 2014, in Halle, Germany. Zoë Schlanger, Newsweek, 15 Dec. 2014 For spring and summer flowers, plant seed for aster, cornflower, cosmos, larkspur, nasturtium, nicotiana, periwinkle, portulaca, rudbeckia, salvia, snapdragon, verbena and zinnias. Debbie Arrington, sacbee, 2 Mar. 2018 Cyclamen, foxglove, nicotiana, forget-me-not, lobelia and primrose are good for the shadier spots (about two hours of direct sun or dappled light)., 28 Oct. 2017 See More

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

Word History


New Latin, from herba nicotiana, literally, Nicot's herb, from Jean Nicot †1600 French diplomat and scholar

First Known Use

1600, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of nicotiana was in 1600

Dictionary Entries Near nicotiana

Cite this Entry

“Nicotiana.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 2 Feb. 2023.

Medical Definition


Ni·​co·​ti·​ana ni-ˌkō-shē-ˈan-ə How to pronounce Nicotiana (audio)
: a genus of American and Asian herbs or shrubs of the family Solanaceae that have viscid foliage, tubular flowers, and a many-seeded capsule and that include the cultivated tobacco (N. tabacum)
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