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[hee-lee-o-truh-piz-uh m, hee-lee-uh-troh-piz-uh m] /ˌhi liˈɒ trəˌpɪz əm, ˌhi li əˈtroʊ pɪz əm/
heliotropic tendency or growth.
Origin of heliotropism
First recorded in 1850-55; helio- + -tropism Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for heliotropism
Historical Examples
  • The heliotropism of animals is identical with the heliotropism of plants.

    Darwin and Modern Science A.C. Seward and Others
  • We have mentioned the newly hatched larv of the barnacle in connection with heliotropism.

  • If it acts in a one-sided way, it causes the particular form of stimulation which we call phototaxis or heliotropism.

    The Wonders of Life Ernst Haeckel
  • We notice also the reverse phenomenon, namely, that chemical changes produced in the animal destroy its heliotropism.

    Darwin and Modern Science A.C. Seward and Others
  • These periodic motions are determined to a large extent, if not exclusively, by the heliotropism of these animals.

    Darwin and Modern Science A.C. Seward and Others
  • Very little attention has been given to the subject of heliotropism until within a few recent years.

    Butterflies Worth Knowing Clarence M. Weed
British Dictionary definitions for heliotropism


the growth of plants or plant parts (esp flowers) in response to the stimulus of sunlight, so that they turn to face the sun
Derived Forms
heliotropic (ˌhiːlɪəʊˈtrɒpɪk) adjective
heliotropically, adverb
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for heliotropism

1854, from heliotrope + -ism.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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heliotropism in Science
The growth or movement of a fixed organism, especially a plant, toward or away from sunlight. Heliotropism can be easily seen in sunflowers, which slowly turn their large flowers so that they continually face the sun.

heliotropic adjective (hēl'lē-ə-trō'pĭk, -trŏp'ĭk)
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary
Copyright © 2002. Published by Houghton Mifflin. All rights reserved.
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