pop·​lar ˈpä-plər How to pronounce poplar (audio)
: any of a genus (Populus) of slender catkin-bearing quick-growing deciduous trees (such as an aspen or cottonwood) of the willow family
: the wood of a poplar

Examples of poplar in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Pissarro puns, in fact, on the resemblance of the smokestacks, atmospherically softened, to the poplar trees rising to their right, the made and the natural evened out by light. Adam Gopnik, The New Yorker, 25 Dec. 2023 Lots of poplar, lots of aspen, lots of black spruce, but there’s also a lot of bog in there, a lot of swamp. Chris Klimek, Smithsonian Magazine, 30 Nov. 2023 For a while, Tabet had lived on the west side of the city, which was filled with tall sycamores, poplars and maples. Annie Midori Atherton, Washington Post, 7 Nov. 2023 The valley runs alongside the Blue Ridge Mountains and Shenandoah National Park and has more than its fair share of deciduous trees, including oaks, birch, poplar, sumac, and maple. Evie Carrick, Travel + Leisure, 25 Sep. 2023 Praise the infinite, nameless tellers of tales swaying from the poplar’s limbs. Matthew Gavin Frank, Harper's Magazine, 21 Jan. 2022 Others, like lodgepoles or poplars, will have much shorter life spans, from 20 to 200 years. Camille Stevens-Rumann, The Conversation, 10 Apr. 2023 Jessica Rinaldi/Globe Staff Mary’s journey last month began when a poplar tree toppled into her enclosure during a thunderstorm, giving her an opening to escape. Globe Staff, BostonGlobe.com, 11 May 2023 The oyster and chestnuts mushrooms can be grown on soft hardwood like aspen, poplar or cottonwood. Joanne Kempinger Demski, Journal Sentinel, 13 Apr. 2023 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'poplar.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History


Middle English popler, from Anglo-French, from Old French *pople poplar, from Latin populus

First Known Use

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

Time Traveler
The first known use of poplar was in the 14th century

Dictionary Entries Near poplar

Cite this Entry

“Poplar.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/poplar. Accessed 24 Feb. 2024.

Kids Definition


pop·​lar ˈpäp-lər How to pronounce poplar (audio)
: any of a genus of slender quick-growing trees (as an aspen or cottonwood) that have catkins for flowers and are related to the willows
: the wood of a poplar

Geographical Definition


geographical name

Pop·​lar ˈpä-plər How to pronounce Poplar (audio)
former metropolitan borough of eastern London, England, on the northern bank of the Thames River that is now part of the borough of Tower Hamlets

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