\ ˈplant How to pronounce plant (audio) \
planted; planting; plants

Definition of plant

 (Entry 1 of 2)

transitive verb

1a : to put or set in the ground for growth plant seeds
b : to set or sow with seeds or plants
c : implant
c : to place (animals) in a new locality
d : to stock with animals
3a : to place in or on the ground
b : to place firmly or forcibly planted a hard blow on his chin
4a : conceal
b : to covertly place for discovery, publication, or dissemination

intransitive verb

: to plant something



Definition of plant (Entry 2 of 2)

1a : a young tree, vine, shrub, or herb planted or suitable for planting
b : any of a kingdom (Plantae) of multicellular eukaryotic mostly photosynthetic organisms typically lacking locomotive movement or obvious nervous or sensory organs and possessing cellulose cell walls
2a : the land, buildings, machinery, apparatus, and fixtures employed in carrying on a trade or an industrial business
b : a factory or workshop for the manufacture of a particular product also : power plant
c : the total facilities available for production or service
d : the buildings and other physical equipment of an institution
3 : an act of planting
4 : something or someone planted

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Other Words from plant


plantable \ ˈplan-​tə-​bəl How to pronounce plant (audio) \ adjective


plantlike \ ˈplant-​ˌlīk How to pronounce plant (audio) \ adjective

Synonyms for plant

Synonyms: Verb

Synonyms: Noun

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Examples of plant in a Sentence

Verb I planted corn this year. I planted the border with roses. a field planted with corn She planted stakes in the garden to hold the vines. I firmly planted my feet and refused to move. He planted himself in front of the TV and stayed there. Terrorists planted a bomb in the bus station. She claims that the police planted the drugs in her car. He was a spy planted in the office by a rival company. Someone planted a rumor saying that he had died. Noun The gangsters never suspected that he was a police plant. a furniture plant that employs hundreds of people
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Recent Examples on the Web: Verb In New York, marijuana regulations can't come soon enough for farmers, who typically plant in early May. Michael Hill, Star Tribune, "Swap the crop? New York hemp farmers eager to grow marijuana," 14 Apr. 2021 It’s because people used to plant tons of them in areas with malaria. Jonas Eika, The New Yorker, "Alvin," 12 Apr. 2021 Face-to-face connections plant the seeds necessary for referrals. Anissa Jones, Forbes, "The Five Business Killers For Startups," 5 Apr. 2021 Her grateful students and their families would join in her birthday celebrations, clean her yard and plant her gardens, her daughter said. Frederick N. Rasmussen,, "Ruth H. Schultz, pastor’s wife and piano teacher, dies," 31 Mar. 2021 Add more soil and plant the next larger bulb, such as tulip. oregonlive, "Plant a pot full of bulbs for spring tulips, daffodils and more," 26 Oct. 2020 She was even allowed to roam the prison alone, giving her ample time to take photos and plant her Rubber Duckies. Krista Stevens, Longreads, "How a Mom Penetrated the Pen to Hack the Warden’s Computer," 2 Mar. 2020 Both of these bulbs are small and very easy to plant, so do not let planting a few hundred of them intimidate you. Tim Johnson,, "Early spring flower envy? Get these bulbs in autumn to get colorful winter aconite and snowdrops next year," 4 Apr. 2021 The first is to plant in large blocks, the second to intersperse them among existing perennials. Adrian Higgins, Washington Post, "Planting bulbs offers a bit of hope for better things to come. Even this year.," 21 Oct. 2020 Recent Examples on the Web: Noun The initial advisory was issued 6 a.m. Saturday when the plant had its power service interrupted, authorities said. Katie Rice,, "Boil water advisory extended in southeast Seminole County, officials say," 12 Apr. 2021 The stems are exceptionally long – is this plant more shaded than its neighbor? oregonlive, "Ask an expert: Does this rhody have a fungal disease, or winter weather damage?," 11 Apr. 2021 This plant supplies power for operation on the surface and for charging the storage batteries. Popular Mechanics Editors, Popular Mechanics, "War Under the Sea: PM at the Beginning of Submarine Warfare," 8 Apr. 2021 Because acidification, the result of the ocean absorbing increasing amounts of carbon dioxide from the atmosphere, has increased by 30% due to climate change, the plant has the ability to reverse the effects in its habitat. Tara Duggan, San Francisco Chronicle, "Underwater meadows of California seagrass found to reverse symptom of climate change," 31 Mar. 2021 The clumping pattern of its foliage gives this pretty plant its name. Arricca Elin Sansone, House Beautiful, "The 10 Best Houseplants for Cleaner Air," 31 Mar. 2021 Native to India and China, this plant spreads like an iris with rhizomes, but with thinner, more grass like foliage. Janet Carson, Arkansas Online, "Mystery Plants growing in our gardens now," 29 Mar. 2021 The plant closed soon after GM's bankruptcy in 2010. Chris Isidore, CNN, "Labor board orders Musk to delete a 3-year-old anti-union tweet," 26 Mar. 2021 Celebrate the rebirth with this two-toned plant that brings the outdoors inside. Tanya Edwards, CNN Underscored, "18 beautiful flower arrangements to send this Easter," 26 Mar. 2021

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


before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1a


before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for plant


Middle English, from Old English plantian, from Late Latin plantare to plant, fix in place, from Latin, to plant, from planta plant


Middle English plante, from Old English, from Latin planta

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Time Traveler for plant

Time Traveler

The first known use of plant was before the 12th century

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Statistics for plant

Last Updated

18 Apr 2021

Cite this Entry

“Plant.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 22 Apr. 2021.

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More Definitions for plant



English Language Learners Definition of plant

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: to put (a seed, flower, or plant) in the ground to grow
: to fill (an area) with seeds, flowers, or plants
: to put or place (something) in the ground



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

: a living thing that grows in the ground, usually has leaves or flowers, and needs sun and water to survive
: a building or factory where something is made
US : the land, buildings, and equipment of an organization


\ ˈplant How to pronounce plant (audio) \
planted; planting

Kids Definition of plant

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : to place in the ground to grow We'll plant seeds in the spring.
2 : to fill with seeds or plants plant a garden
3 : to set firmly in the ground They planted posts for a fence.
4 : to place firmly He planted himself on the couch.
5 : to introduce as a thought or idea
6 : to place (someone or something) secretly … the teacher thought that he was planted in the audience to pep up the discussion …— E. L. Konigsburg, Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler



Kids Definition of plant (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : any member of the kingdom of many-celled mostly photosynthetic living things (as mosses, ferns, grasses, and trees) that lack a nervous system or sense organs and the ability to move about and that have cellulose cell walls
2 : the buildings and equipment of an industrial business or an institution a power plant

Other Words from plant

plantlike \ ˈplant-​ˌlīk \ adjective

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More from Merriam-Webster on plant

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for plant

Nglish: Translation of plant for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of plant for Arabic Speakers

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