[ per-foh-lee-it, -eyt ]
/ pərˈfoʊ li ɪt, -ˌeɪt /

adjective Botany.

having the stem apparently passing through the leaf, owing to congenital union of the basal edges of the leaf round the stem.

Origin of perfoliate

1540–50; < New Latin perfoliātus (see per-, foliate), the feminine of which, perfoliāta, was formerly used as the name of a plant with a stalk that seemed to grow through (pierce) its leafage


per·fo·li·a·tion, noun Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for perfoliate

  • The former is usually confined to the small intestine, but the perfoliate worm often occupies the ccum and colon in great numbers.

    Parasites|T. Spencer Cobbold

British Dictionary definitions for perfoliate

/ (pəˈfəʊlɪɪt, -ˌeɪt) /


(of a leaf) having a base that completely encloses the stem, so that the stem appears to pass through it

Derived forms of perfoliate

perfoliation, noun

Word Origin for perfoliate

C17: from New Latin perfoliātus, from Latin per- through + folium leaf
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