from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • n. The food-conducting tissue of vascular plants, consisting of sieve tubes, fibers, parenchyma, and sclereids. Also called bast.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. A vascular tissue in land plants primarily responsible for the distribution of sugars and nutrients manufactured in the shoot.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. That portion of fibrovascular bundles which corresponds to the inner bark; the liber tissue; -- distinguished from xylem.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. In botany, the bast or liber portion of a vascular bundle, or the region of a vascular bundle or axis with secondary thickening which contains sieve-tubes. Compare xylem.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • n. (botany) tissue that conducts synthesized food substances (e.g., from leaves) to parts where needed; consists primarily of sieve tubes


German, from Greek phloios, bark.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
First attested in 1872. From German Phlöem, from Ancient Greek φλόος (phloos, "husk, bark"), from φλέω (phleō, "I abound") (Wiktionary)



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  • Honeydew is a sugar-rich sticky substance, secreted by aphids and some scale insects as they feed on plant sap. When their mouthpart penetrates the phloem, the sugary, high-pressure liquid is forced out of the gut's terminal opening.

    September 2, 2010