plum·​ba·​go | \ ˌpləm-ˈbā-(ˌ)gō How to pronounce plumbago (audio) \
plural plumbagos

Definition of plumbago

1 [New Latin, from Latin] : any of a genus (Plumbago of the family Plumbaginaceae, the plumbago family) of chiefly tropical herbs and shrubs with alternate leaves and spikes of showy flowers

Examples of plumbago in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Among the virtual rainbow of plants are foxtail agave, sea lavender, society garlic, blue chalksticks, lantana, Texas sundrop, paddle plants, butterfly bush, cape plumbago, agapanthus and a small bougainvillea bush. San Diego Union-Tribune, "Rancho San Diego landscape earns award for colorful, waterwise ‘room with a view’," 20 Sep. 2020 Outside the fence along the sidewalk, blue plumbago and yellow melampodium dominate the plantings. R. Stephanie Bruno,, "Designed as an 1880s carriage house, this Uptown building becomes a casually elegant home," 10 Sep. 2020 Scaevolas spread as ground covers, plumbagos grow into blooming shrubs, and the sculptural succulents thrive in full sun. Grace Haynes, Southern Living, "This Easy-to-Make Arrangement is the Mother's Day Gift That Keeps on Growing," 17 Apr. 2020 Cape plumbago This is a tropical annual that grows to 18 or 20 inches tall. Neil Sperry, star-telegram, "Summertime blues are a good thing when it comes to these 'cooling' plants," 28 June 2018 For May through July have zinnias, mistflower, milkweed, pentas, pavonia, cosmos and plumbago growing in your yard. Calvin Finch, San Antonio Express-News, "Attracting and producing butterflies in your landscape," 6 Apr. 2018 Keep an eye on the forecast before taking the clippers to that dead wood on lantana, hibiscus, es-peranza, duranta, plumbago, oleander and firebush. Kathy Huber, Houston Chronicle, "After the freeze comes the cleanup in the garden," 19 Jan. 2018 An unusual winter deciduous shrubby perennial, Chinese plumbago offers attractive golden foliage. Debbie Arrington, sacbee, "A golden opportunity for dry shade," 25 Aug. 2017 White vinca and blue plumbago are personal favorites. Madeleine Luckel, Vogue, "Sprucing Up Your Garden for Summer, the Tropical Way," 2 July 2017

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

1732, in the meaning defined at sense 2

History and Etymology for plumbago

Latin plumbagin-, plumbago galena, from plumbum

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about plumbago

Time Traveler for plumbago

Time Traveler

The first known use of plumbago was in 1732

See more words from the same year

Statistics for plumbago

Cite this Entry

“Plumbago.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 3 Dec. 2020.

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for plumbago


plum·​ba·​go | \ ˌpləm-ˈbā-(ˌ)gō How to pronounce plumbago (audio) \
plural plumbagos

Medical Definition of plumbago

More from Merriam-Webster on plumbago Encyclopedia article about plumbago

Comments on plumbago

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


Test Your Vocabulary

Musical Words Quiz

  • gramophone
  • Which word describes a musical performance marked by the absence of instrumental accompaniment?
Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?

Add Diction

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

Love words? Need even more definitions?

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