pol·​len | \ ˈpä-lən How to pronounce pollen (audio) \

Definition of pollen

1 : a mass of microspores in a seed plant appearing usually as a fine dust
2 : a dusty bloom on the body of an insect

Examples of pollen in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web These findings corroborate a 2007 study that had examined the pollen content in Otzi's gut to reconstruct his route. Jessie Yeung, CNN, "Frozen moss reveals fatal final journey of 5,300-year-old ice mummy," 31 Oct. 2019 The bee travels to the next flower in search of more nectar, some of the pollen rubs off onto the flower’s pistil, or female reproductive organ, and fertilization can take place. Steve Johnson, chicagotribune.com, "Talking about the bats and the bees: Pollination is a theme this summer at Chicago Botanic Garden," 23 July 2019 Marcus, on the other hand, had suffered from asthma symptoms for much of April, and the heavy spring pollen was giving him trouble. Jon Michaud, The New Yorker, "Julius: The Story of a Premature Birth," 15 Aug. 2019 Signature item: One of their best-sellers is the Dragon Bowl, which comes with pitaya, mango juice, coconut milk, bananas, pineapple, raspberries, strawberries, kiwi, almonds, goji berries, bee pollen and honey. Kelly Wei, Dallas News, "When did açai bowls become all the rage, and where should you go in D-FW to find them? Curious Texas explores," 9 Aug. 2019 Every year, Powell and his staff cut or bag every flower to keep the pollen from spreading. Julia Rosen, latimes.com, "Should we resurrect the American chestnut tree with genetic engineering?," 25 June 2019 In your lifetime the pollen is only going to increase. Dave Epstein, BostonGlobe.com, "You’re not imagining it: The pollen increase is real, and it’s linked to climate change," 11 June 2019 Gutter cleaning: Leaves, weed and tree seeds, dirt and pollen fall into gutters throughout the year. Leah Napoliello, Houston Chronicle, "BBB on Homes: Hire a contractor for fall season yard spruce-up," 14 Sep. 2019 The survivors made it into the germ line, so the within-lifetime innovations were passed on to subsequent flowers and pollen. Elizabeth Pennisi, Science | AAAS, "Meet the monkeyflower, a weed that may hold the key to zebra stripes and other biological mysteries," 29 Aug. 2019

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

1723, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for pollen

New Latin pollin-, pollen, from Latin, fine flour

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about pollen

Statistics for pollen

Last Updated

14 Nov 2019

Time Traveler for pollen

The first known use of pollen was in 1723

See more words from the same year

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for pollen


How to pronounce pollen (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of pollen

: the very fine usually yellow dust that is produced by a plant and that is carried to other plants of the same kind usually by wind or insects so that the plants can produce seeds


pol·​len | \ ˈpä-lən How to pronounce pollen (audio) \

Kids Definition of pollen

: the very tiny grains produced by the stamens of a flower or special sacs of a male cone that fertilize the seeds and usually appear as fine yellow dust


pol·​len | \ ˈpäl-ən How to pronounce pollen (audio) \

Medical Definition of pollen

: a mass of male spores in a seed plant appearing usually as a fine dust

Keep scrolling for more

More from Merriam-Webster on pollen

Spanish Central: Translation of pollen

Nglish: Translation of pollen for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of pollen for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about pollen

Comments on pollen

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


to engage in dissolute behavior

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?

Bee Cubed

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!