from The Century Dictionary.

  • Anything which affords nourishment to vegetation or plants; a fertilizer.
  • noun In general, it is any substance that the plant takes in and utilizes in its life-process, as water with its mineral salts, and carbon dioxid. In a special sense it is sometimes restricted by botanists to the first organic compounds (starch-like materials) that are made by the plant, since these are used more or less directly in nourishing the plant.


Sorry, no etymologies found.


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  • TerraCycle a small New Jersey-based organic plant-food company is being sued by industry giant Scotts Miracle-Gro.

    Scotts Miracle-Gro Sues TerraCycle

  • TerraCycle a small New Jersey-based organic plant-food company is being sued by industry giant Scotts Miracle-Gro.

    35 posts from April 2007

  • Vegfam, a U. K.-based charity that funds sustainable plant-food projects, estimates that a 10-acre farm can support 60 people by growing soy, 24 people by growing wheat or 10 people by growing corn — but only two by raising cattle.

    Meat habit is fueling world famine

  • But let that soil be water-soaked, and have the proper bacteria at work, and the material is in plant-food form.

    The Library of Work and Play: Gardening and Farming.

  • That substance differs in no respect from any other element of plant-food, and used in this way is to all intents and purposes a special manure, and acts merely by bringing into play those substances which the soil already contains.

    Elements of Agricultural Chemistry

  • Tull in asserting that plants feed on earth; air and water alone, in his opinion, furnish the supply of plant-food.

    The Atlantic Monthly, Volume 13, No. 79, May, 1864

  • Nitrification is also dependent on the presence of plant-food suitable for organisms of low character.

    Scientific American Supplement, No. 470, January 3, 1885

  • Further, the amount of this available plant-food will vary with different crops -- one crop being able to grow where another crop would starve.

    Manures and the principles of manuring

  • On the other hand, a general manure prevents or diminishes the consumption of the elements of plant-food contained in the soil, and if added in sufficient abundance, may cause them to accumulate in it, and even enable an almost absolutely barren soil to yield a tolerable crop.

    Elements of Agricultural Chemistry

  • In soils which are either excessively tenacious or light, the accumulation of the manure close to the plants has also the effect of producing an artificial soil in their immediate neighbourhood, containing abundance of plant-food, and having physical properties better fitted for the support of the plant.

    Elements of Agricultural Chemistry


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