rhi·​zome | \ ˈrī-ˌzōm How to pronounce rhizome (audio) \

Definition of rhizome

: a somewhat elongated usually horizontal subterranean plant stem that is often thickened by deposits of reserve food material, produces shoots above and roots below, and is distinguished from a true root in possessing buds, nodes, and usually scalelike leaves

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Other Words from rhizome

rhizomic \ rī-​ˈzō-​mik How to pronounce rhizomic (audio) , -​ˈzä-​ \ adjective

Examples of rhizome in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web The top of the rhizome should be about one-half inch below the soil surface. Dan Gill, NOLA.com, "It's a net gain of Louisiana irises: Divide them now, then use the pieces to create more plants," 3 Sep. 2020 Plant the rhizomes so that the top is level with the soil surface. Calvin Finch, ExpressNews.com, "Calvin Finch: Your guide to shade- and drought-tolerant groundcovers to replace your San Antonio lawn grass," 14 May 2020 The most loathed perennial weeds are often those that multiply by rhizomes — underground stem tissue laden with buds ready to sprout anew should any be left behind. Margaret Roach, New York Times, "The Dirty Secret About Weeding," 8 May 2020 Kentucky bluegrass grows strong and quickly due to a robust root system of underground rhizomes. Joseph Truini, Popular Mechanics, "The Most Popular Types of Lawn Grass," 19 Apr. 2020 Pokeweed’s notoriety stems from livestock poisonings or improper preparation: Animals that graze on the mature plant or snout out its toxic rhizome can grow sick and die; unripe fruit and uncooked green parts are also toxic to humans. Marie Viljoen/saveur, Popular Science, "Ten weeds you can eat," 19 Apr. 2020 Grass spreads by rhizomes and is terrific at finding a way to the light. oregonlive, "Ask an expert: Layer of cardboard can be used as weed barrier - with caveats," 21 Mar. 2020 The white part of the pup is where the soil level sits, and the orange part — the rhizome — is the underground portions of stem that produces roots. Heather Arndt Anderson, Sunset Magazine, "How to Pot Up Snake Plant Pups," 16 Mar. 2020 This Karnataka-style pickle was seasoned with fresh green chiles and mango ginger, a fruity-tasting rhizome related to turmeric. Tejal Rao, New York Times, "India’s ‘Pickle Queen’ Preserves Everything, Including the Past," 6 Jan. 2020

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

1833, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for rhizome

New Latin rhizomat-, rhizoma, from Greek rhizōmat-, rhizōma mass of roots, from rhizoun to cause to take root, from rhiza root — more at root

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Time Traveler for rhizome

Time Traveler

The first known use of rhizome was in 1833

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Statistics for rhizome

Last Updated

16 Sep 2020

Cite this Entry

“Rhizome.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/rhizome. Accessed 22 Sep. 2020.

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More Definitions for rhizome


How to pronounce rhizome (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of rhizome

botany : a thick plant stem that grows underground and has shoots and roots growing from it


rhi·​zome | \ ˈrī-ˌzōm How to pronounce rhizome (audio) \

Medical Definition of rhizome

: a usually horizontal subterranean plant stem that is distinguished from a true root in possessing buds, nodes, and usually scalelike leaves

More from Merriam-Webster on rhizome

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about rhizome

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