Gardener’s Glossary of Gardening Terms

Axil: The angle between the leafstalk and the stem.

Axillary: Arising in the axil.

Ball: The mass of soil and roots of a pot-grown plant.

Bleeding: The excretion of sap, usually as a result of late pruning.

Blind: A condition in which a plant has no growing point. Frequent in seedlings of brassicas. Hence to go blind.

Bloom: A powdery, waxy substance found on some fruits and leaves, especially those of plants that like dry conditions.

Bolt: When a vegetable plant flowers rather than makes a good heart, it is said to bolt. A common condition in lettuces during hot, dry periods.

Bract: A modified leaf, usually small, often green, at the base of a flower stalk or behind a flower head.

Brassica: The generic name for the cabbage family.

Break: A branch or fork, resulting from disbudding or injury.

Bulbil: A very small or secondary bulb that forms on such plants as Lilium tigrinum.

Catch crop: A quick-growing crop, grown on ground prepared for another purpose and harvested without interfering with the growth of the main crop.

Clamp: A frost-proof structure made from straw and soil for storing root crops in the winter.

Crocks: Pieces of broken flowerpot used to provide drainage in pots and boxes.

Crook stage: (see Loop stage)

Cultivar: A cultivated variety.

Schematic showing a plant cutting

Cutting: A portion of stem, leaf or root which has been removed from a plant and prepared for independent growth.

Dibber: A wooden tool used for making holes. A slender dibber is used for seedlings and a thicker one for other plants. Hence to dibble in seedlings.

Dicotyledon: A plant bearing two seed leaves.

Epiphyte: A plant that grows above ground on other plants and derives nourishment from the air. Hence epiphytic orchids.

Farina: A while flour-like substance that covers stems and leaves of some plants, such as primulas.

Fastigiate: Erect and tapering in habit. A term used to describe the form of such trees as the Lombardy poplar.

Floret: A floweret, one of the individual flowers which make up the head of a composite flower, such as a dahlia.

Friable: A term used to indicate a good loose condition of soil; easily broken up and workable.

Frond: The whole leaf of a fern.

Glaucous: Covered with a bloom, bluish-grey.

Haulm: The name given to the stem of some plants, such as peas, beans and potatoes, after harvesting.

Incurved: Petals or florets curving inward, as in some chrysanthemums.

Inflorescence: A group or arrangement of flowers on a stalk, sometimes forming a flower head.

Internode: The portion of stem between two nodes.

Kind: Genus; plants that vary botanic-ally from one another.

Lateral: Side shoot.

Leader: The main shoot.

Loop stage: An early stage of growth in seedlings of the onion family, when the growing tip is still held by the seed coat. Also called crook stage.

Maiden: A plant in its first year after grafting or budding.

Monocotyledon: A plant bearing one seed leaf.

Moraine: An accumulation of debris formed by glacial action. Used in rock-gardening to describe a bed of similar construction.

Mulch: A top dressing put on the soil round plants to conserve moisture.

Naturalize: To grow plants under near-natural conditions so that they can maintain themselves.

Node: The point at which a leaf grows from a stem.

Open weather: Periods in winter that are free from frost, snow or rain.

Panicle: A type of inflorescence in which there are several forked branches, each with the youngest flowers at the top; for instance, lilac.

Parterre: A level space occupied by flower beds ornamentally arranged.

In botany, a bud is an undeveloped or embryoni...

Image via Wikipedia

PH: A symbol used in conjunction with numbers to denote degrees of alkalinity or acidity.

Picotee: A dianthus with light petals edged with a darker colour.

Pleach: To interlace; the weaving of branches to form a screen.

Pollard: A tree that has been severely lopped so that the head consists of new wood; common practice with willows.

Pot-bound: A plant that has completely filled its pot with roots is said to be pot-bound. When turned out of the pot, only roots are visible.

Puddle: To dip plant roots into a mixture of soil and water just before planting.

Raceme: A type of inflorescence in which the individual flowers grow all round the main stem, and are attached to it by a small stalk, as in the hyacinth. The lower flowers open first.

Recurved: Petals or florets curving outward or backward.

Rhizome: An underground or surface running stem that resembles a root but produces true roots and shoots.

Scion: A bud or shoot removed from the parent plant for budding or grafting on to another plant.

Sepals: The green outer parts of a flower, collectively forming the calyx.

Set: A name given at planting time to some bulbs and tubers such as onions, shallots and potatoes. (to) Set: Fruit blossom that has been fertilized and started to form miniature fruitlets is said to have set.

Slip: A cutting prepared by pulling a side shoot away from the main stem, so that a piece of the stem comes away at the same time.

Spadix: A column-like spike of male and female flowers usually surrounded by a spathe, as in the arum lily.

Spathe: The large bract surrounding the spadix in such plants as the arum lily.

Victoria amazonica flower head

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Spit: One spade’s depth of soil, usually ten inches.

Spore: The minute ‘seed’ of ferns, mosses and fungi.

Sport: A shoot that differs (usually in flower colour) from the parent plant. Common in chrysanthemums.

Sp.: Species (plural: sps.).

Square-area rainer: A device on an iron stand fitted to the end of a hose. Water passes through a ‘rain fan’ which moves slowly backward and forward covering a square area with artificial rain.

Station sowing: The practice of sowing seeds at the distance apart at which the plants are to grow.

Stigma: The sticky top of the style which receives the pollen grains.

Stolon: A shoot running along the surface of the soil and rooting at intervals. Strawberry runners are an example.

Stool: A plant used only for propagation. A term commonly applied to chrysanthemum plants that are kept through the winter to produce cuttings.

Strike: To give to a cutting conditions of cultivation conducive to root production. Once the roots have formed, the cutting is said to have ‘struck’

Style: The stem of the female part of the flower that connects the stigma to the ovary.

Thong: A piece of root used as a root cutting for propagation.

English: Seed pods on a stem

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Tilth: The texture of the soil: a fine tilth resembles dry crumbs.

Top fruit: Apples, pears and stone fruit.

Truss: A loose bunch of fruit or flowers as in tomatoes and rhododendrons.

Tubercle: A small tuber-like growth.

Type plant: The original species.

Variety: A variation of the species of any plant. 

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07. September 2013 by admin
Categories: Glossary | Tags: , , , , , , , , , | Comments Off on Gardener’s Glossary of Gardening Terms


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