veg·​e·​ta·​tion | \ˌve-jə-ˈtā-shən \

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 \ 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

California was again drenched with heavy rains earlier this year, leading to a similar pattern of vegetation. Umair Irfan, Vox, "California’s wildfires are hardly “natural” — humans made them worse at every step," 12 Nov. 2018 All of the vegetation is real, with the exception of the three-foot-tall grass, because real grass would wilt under the lights throughout days of filming. Emma Dibdin, Harper's BAZAAR, "How Crazy Rich Asians Made Its Wedding-on-a-Budget Look Like $40 Million," 6 Sep. 2018 But the wide number of issues under discussion—including vegetation management and wildfire mitigation—complicated the task. Erin Ailworth And Sara Randazzo, WSJ, "California Passes Bill to Rescue Utility Facing Fire Costs," 1 Sep. 2018 Wednesday Containment: 60 percent contained, as of 7:30 a.m. Wednesday What's happened: The vegetation fire has killed one civilian and injured three firefighters. Julia Sclafani, sacbee, "Northern California wildfire updates: Pacific Crest Trail closures in effect despite progress on Klamathon Fire," 11 July 2018 Tens of millions of dollars in the state budget for next fiscal year and in California’s cap-and-trade program, which generates revenue by charging businesses for polluting, are earmarked for vegetation management. Kurtis Alexander,, "With wildfire season at hand, California on slightly safer footing this year," 17 June 2018 And vegetation fires can’t occur until the oxygen level in the atmosphere has reached around 15%. Andrew C. Scott, Time, "When Did Humans Discover Fire? The Answer Depends on What You Mean By 'Discover'," 1 June 2018 Right now, Drayton said, the department is training everyone on how to use Accela for vegetation-management inspections — different than commercial inspections — as wildfire season in the hills nears. Kimberly Veklerov, San Francisco Chronicle, "Oakland halts fire inspection program because of software change," 10 May 2018 Native vegetation, waterfalls, butterfly gardens, and orchids will be spread across the more than 100 acres of open space that will be created or reimagined by the project, another example of the parks-as-rooms concept. Patrick Sisson, Curbed, "Miami’s Underline underscores potential of park projects," 19 Oct. 2018

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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Statistics for vegetation

Last Updated

28 Nov 2018

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Time Traveler for vegetation

The first known use of vegetation was in 1564

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English Language Learners Definition of vegetation

: plants in general : plants that cover a particular area


veg·​e·​ta·​tion | \ˌve-jə-ˈtā-shən \

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 \

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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Comments on vegetation

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


to move with a clumsy heavy tread

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