ornamental

adjective
or·​na·​men·​tal | \ˌȯr-nə-ˈmen-tᵊl \

Definition of ornamental 

(Entry 1 of 2)

: of, relating to, or serving as ornament specifically : grown as an ornamental

ornamental

noun

Definition of ornamental (Entry 2 of 2)

: a decorative object especially : a plant cultivated for its beauty rather than for use

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Other Words from ornamental

Adjective

ornamentally \ˌȯr-​nə-​ˈmen-​tᵊl-​ē \ adverb

Synonyms & Antonyms for ornamental

Synonyms: Adjective

adorning, beautifying, cosmetic, decorative, embellishing

Synonyms: Noun

bauble, bibelot, curio, curiosity, doodad, gaud, gewgaw (also geegaw), gimcrack, kickshaw, knickknack (also nicknack), novelty, tchotchke, trinket

Antonyms: Adjective

functional, utilitarian

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Examples of ornamental in a Sentence

Adjective

The garden has many ornamental shrubs. the trim on Victorian houses is sometimes elaborately ornamental

Noun

The garden has many beautiful ornamentals. a collection of fragile ornamentals kept in a glass cabinet
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Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective

Try this beet in your flower border — the wine-red leaves are highly ornamental and look great all summer. The Editors, Good Housekeeping, "How to Grow Beets This Fall for a Hearty Autumn Harvest," 21 Aug. 2018 Photo: Herman van Heusden for The Wall Street Journal In Holland, Belle Époque suburban mansions could looked like large versions of alpine farmhouses, with overhanging roofs and ornamental wooden trusses. J.s. Marcus, WSJ, "Building an Alpine Chalet for the Low-Lying Netherlands," 30 Oct. 2018 The ensuing remodel stripped the Rhodes building of its ornamental pleasures (for some) to become the gas company’s center for billing and exhibiting modern appliances. Paul Dorpat, The Seattle Times, "The fate of the Rhodes Stores turned on a dime," 26 Oct. 2018 Breeds with thicker plumage do better in cold climates, while those without a lot of extra insulation, such as Silkies (a fabulously ornamental breed with feathers that look more like fur) live comfortably in warmer climates. Denise Foley, Good Housekeeping, "Everything You Need to Know About Raising Backyard Chickens," 14 Aug. 2018 The issue on neighbors' and preservationists' minds: Will the famous Portland estate that includes the ornamental Prairie-style house on almost three lots and two adjoining lots be subdivided? Janet Eastman, OregonLive.com, "Washington Park Maegly mansion sells for $3 million (photos)," 21 Feb. 2018 The plants may even be a mixture of edible and ornamental plants. Margaret Lauterbach, idahostatesman, "Cottage gardens can include edibles as well as ornamentals | Idaho Statesman," 21 Mar. 2018 Unlike ornamental plants, vegetables need consistently moist (not wet) soil. Nan Sterman, latimes.com, "What to do in your garden in July? Less is more," 6 July 2018 Unlike ornamental plants, vegetables need consistently moist (not wet) soil. Nan Sterman, latimes.com, "What to do in your garden in July? Less is more," 6 July 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

They can be found on many fruits and vegetables, ornamentals, and shade trees. The Editors, Good Housekeeping, "The 10 Most Destructive Garden Insects and How to Get Rid of Them," 10 July 2018 They can be found on many fruits and vegetables, ornamentals, and shade trees. The Editors, Good Housekeeping, "The 10 Most Destructive Garden Insects and How to Get Rid of Them," 10 July 2018 They can be found on many fruits and vegetables, ornamentals, and shade trees. The Editors Of Organic Life, Good Housekeeping, "10 Most Destructive Garden Insects And How To Get Rid Of Them," 3 June 2016 Such was the objective in pruning hardy kiwifruits planted as ornamentals at old estates. The Editors Of Organic Life, Good Housekeeping, "How To Grow Your Own Kiwis In Your Backyard," 6 Feb. 2018 My plantings grow clustered with other ornamentals kept in containers or in the ground. Tom Maccubbin, OrlandoSentinel.com, "Local amaryllis brimming with spring color," 4 Apr. 2018 Virtually all insecticides labeled for use on ornamentals to control insects will kill aphids. Dan Gill is a horticulturist with the LSU AgCenter. Dan Gill, NOLA.com, "How to treat aphids on ornamental plants," 10 Mar. 2018 And as the flowers appear just a step ahead of the leaves, the showers of pink flowers from these three star ornamentals are particularly dazzling. Earl Nickel, San Francisco Chronicle, "Ornamental cherry trees bring a waterfall of blooms," 23 Feb. 2018 Watch fruit trees and ornamentals such as pyracantha, for signs of fireblight. Margaret Lauterbach, idahostatesman, "Thinking of becoming a gardener? Here’s a primer for southern Idaho," 31 Jan. 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'ornamental.' 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 ornamental

Adjective

1595, in the meaning defined above

Noun

1650, in the meaning defined above

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Statistics for ornamental

Last Updated

4 Dec 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for ornamental

The first known use of ornamental was in 1595

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More Definitions for ornamental

ornamental

adjective

English Language Learners Definition of ornamental

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: used to make something more attractive : used for decoration

ornamental

noun

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

: a plant that is grown for its beauty rather than for its fruit, wood, etc. : an ornamental plant

ornamental

adjective
or·​na·​men·​tal | \ˌȯr-nə-ˈmen-tᵊl \

Kids Definition of ornamental

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: serving to add beauty : decorative The columns are just ornamental.

ornamental

noun

Kids Definition of ornamental (Entry 2 of 2)

: a plant grown for its beauty

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Comments on ornamental

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