[ nahy-truh-fahy ]

verb (used with object),ni·tri·fied, ni·tri·fy·ing.
  1. Chemistry, Biology. to oxidize (ammonia, ammonium compounds, or free atmospheric nitrogen) to nitrites and then to nitrates, especially in soil by bacterial or other microbial action.

  2. Chemistry. to infuse with nitrogen or nitrogen compounds.

  1. Chemistry. to treat or combine with nitrogen or its compounds.

  2. Chemistry. (formerly) to convert into niter.

Origin of nitrify

First recorded in 1820–30; from French nitrifier; see nitr-, niter, -i-, -fy

Other words from nitrify

  • ni·tri·fi·a·ble, adjective

Words Nearby nitrify Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2024

How to use nitrify in a sentence

British Dictionary definitions for nitrify


/ (ˈnaɪtrɪˌfaɪ) /

verb-fies, -fying or -fied (tr)
  1. to treat or cause to react with nitrogen or a nitrogen compound

  2. to treat (soil) with nitrates

  1. (of nitrobacteria) to convert (ammonium compounds) into nitrates by oxidation

Derived forms of nitrify

  • nitrifiable, adjective

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