- a disease of seedlings, occurring either before or immediately after emerging from the soil, characterized by rotting of the stem at soil level and eventual collapse of the plant, caused by any of several soil fungi.
Origin of damping-off
- slightly wet; moist: damp weather; a damp towel.
- unenthusiastic; dejected; depressed: The welcoming committee gave them a rather damp reception.
- moisture; humidity; moist air: damp that goes through your warmest clothes.
- a noxious or stifling vapor or gas, especially in a mine.
- depression of spirits; dejection.
- a restraining or discouraging force or factor.
- to make damp; moisten.
- to check or retard the energy, action, etc., of; deaden; dampen: A series of failures damped her enthusiasm.
- to stifle or suffocate; extinguish: to damp a furnace.
- Acoustics, Music. to check or retard the action of (a vibrating string); dull; deaden.
- Physics. to cause a decrease in amplitude of (successive oscillations or waves).
- damp off, to undergo damping-off.
Origin of damp
SynonymsSee more synonyms on Thesaurus.com
- any of various diseases of plants, esp the collapse and death of seedlings caused by the parasitic fungus Pythium debaryanum and related fungi in conditions of excessive moisture
- slightly wet, as from dew, steam, etc
- archaic dejected
- slight wetness; moisture; humidity
- rank air or poisonous gas, esp in a mineSee also firedamp
- a discouragement; damper
- archaic dejection
- to make slightly wet
- (often foll by down) to stifle or deadento damp one's ardour
- (often foll by down) to reduce the flow of air to (a fire) to make it burn more slowly or to extinguish it
- physics to reduce the amplitude of (an oscillation or wave)
- music to muffle (the sound of an instrument)
Word Origin and History for damping off
late 14c., "to suffocate," from damp (n.). Figurative meaning "to deaden (the spirits, etc.)" attested by 1540s. Meaning "to moisten" is recorded from 1670s. Related: Damped; damping.
1580s, "dazed," from damp (n.). Meaning "slightly wet" is from 1706. Related: Dampness.
early 14c., "a noxious vapor," perhaps in Old English but there is no record of it. If not, probably from Middle Low German damp; ultimately in either case from Proto-Germanic *dampaz (cf. Old High German damph, German Dampf "vapor;" Old Norse dampi "dust"). Sense of "moisture, humidity" is first certainly attested 1706.
- Any of various diseases of seedlings that are caused by oomycetes, especially of the genus Pythium, or by fungi, and result in wilting and death.