tus·​sock ˈtə-sək How to pronounce tussock (audio)
: a compact tuft especially of grass or sedge
also : an area of raised solid ground in a marsh or bog that is bound together by roots of low vegetation
tussocky adjective

Example Sentences

There were grassy tussocks throughout the marsh.
Recent Examples on the Web SwagBot can be seen automatically detecting and spraying serrated tussock. IEEE Spectrum, 15 Feb. 2019 Yet the swamp traveller goes not in a straight line but slouches from quaking island to thick tussock to slippery, half-submerged log. Annie Proulx, The New Yorker, 27 June 2022 The Mackenzie area’s dry tussock is home to moths and other insects found nowhere else on Earth. Petrina Darrah, Wired, 2 Oct. 2021 Indigenous flora are abundant, including rimu, tawa, matai, rata, and tussock. Cynthia Ozick, The New Yorker, 14 June 2021 Then explore the surrounding sparkling rivers, cool forests, swaying valleys of tussock, and soaring mountaintops. Alexandra Stewart, Travel + Leisure, 14 June 2020 The females scrape out a depression on the ground to lay their eggs, typically on a mound or tussock. Don Lyman, BostonGlobe.com, 30 Dec. 2019 Now imagine tussocks or talus (rock fields) covered by six inches of snow with water underneath. Holly Brooks, Anchorage Daily News, 1 July 2018 Karl Lagerfeld’s Fall 2018 show for Chanel re-created an autumnal wonderland inside the Grand Palais, down to icebox-crisped fall leaves, tussocks of moss, and Brontë-esque fog. Chloe Malle, Vogue, 24 Apr. 2018 See More

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

Word History


origin unknown

First Known Use

1607, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of tussock was in 1607

Dictionary Entries Near tussock

Cite this Entry

“Tussock.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/tussock. Accessed 9 Jun. 2023.

Kids Definition


tus·​sock ˈtəs-ək How to pronounce tussock (audio)
: a compact bunch especially of grass or sedge
also : an area of raised solid ground in a marsh or bog that is bound together by plant roots
tussocky adjective
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