veg·​e·​ta·​tion | \ ˌve-jə-ˈtā-shən How to pronounce vegetation (audio) \

Definition of vegetation

1 : plant life or total plant cover (as of an area)
2 : the act or process of vegetating
3 : inert existence
4 : an abnormal growth upon a body part fibrin vegetations on the mitral valve

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Other Words from vegetation

vegetational \ ˌve-​jə-​ˈtā-​shnəl , -​shə-​nᵊl How to pronounce vegetation (audio) \ adjective

Examples of vegetation in a Sentence

the dense vegetation of the jungle the local vegetation is flourishing as a result of the recent rains
Recent Examples on the Web This ends up increasing the quantity of living and dead vegetation across the state that is dry enough to burn. Alex Fox, Smithsonian Magazine, "California’s Fire Season May Be Starting Early This Year," 12 May 2021 Rapid melting & sublimation continues amid an unusually early spate of critical fire weather conditions (driven by record-dry vegetation for the date, anomalous warmth, and offshore winds). Kellie Hwang, San Francisco Chronicle, "Sierra snowpack is already 'wiped out' this year, adding to California drought and fire worries," 11 May 2021 Called lidar, this technology was able to do in a few days of scanning and data-processing what had previously taken archaeologists months if not years of work: see through dense vegetation to accurately map the ground surface of Angkor. Alison Kyra Carter, The Conversation, "A metropolis arose in medieval Cambodia – new research shows how many people lived in the Angkor Empire over time," 7 May 2021 Last month, on a pair of rice and crawfish fields in southeast Texas, mounds of vegetation a few feet tall made modern history. Henry Gass, The Christian Science Monitor, "‘This is a great story’: Whooping cranes make a comeback," 7 May 2021 The former poses threats that can reverberate throughout the environment, by detracting from the benefits that soils can offer to local vegetation. al, "Asian jumping worms, known as Alabama jumpers, landing in gardens around the state," 4 May 2021 In parched forests, brush and grasslands, dry vegetation has been primed to burn, and has gone up in flames. Ian James, The Arizona Republic, "New normals: The Southwest has grown hotter and drier over the past decade, data shows," 4 May 2021 The short version: Nobody knows exactly how bad things will be, but a combination of meager rainfall, depleted snowpack and dry vegetation spells trouble. Los Angeles Times, "California just hit 95% renewable energy. Will other states come along for the ride?," 29 Apr. 2021 Forecasters cautioned residents to be mindful of their vegetation, as frost is expected across most of the state. Brianna Kwasnik, Arkansas Online, "Forecasters: Freezing temperatures, chance for snow predicted in Arkansas," 20 Apr. 2021

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

1564, in the meaning defined at sense 2

History and Etymology for vegetation

borrowed from Medieval Latin vegetātiōn-, vegetātiō "power of growth," going back to Latin, "act of invigorating," from vegetāre "to impart energy to, invigorate" + -tiōn-, -tiō, suffix of verbal nouns — more at vegetate

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Time Traveler for vegetation

Time Traveler

The first known use of vegetation was in 1564

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Statistics for vegetation

Last Updated

14 May 2021

Cite this Entry

“Vegetation.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 16 May. 2021.

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More Definitions for vegetation



English Language Learners Definition of vegetation

: plants in general : plants that cover a particular area


veg·​e·​ta·​tion | \ ˌve-jə-ˈtā-shən How to pronounce vegetation (audio) \

Kids Definition of vegetation

: plant life or cover (as of an area) The valley was green with vegetation.


veg·​e·​ta·​tion | \ ˌvej-ə-ˈtā-shən How to pronounce vegetation (audio) \

Medical Definition of vegetation

: an abnormal outgrowth upon a body part specifically : any of the warty excrescences on the valves of the heart that are composed of various tissue elements including fibrin and collagen and that are typical of endocarditis

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