• synonyms


See more synonyms for seedling on Thesaurus.com
  1. a plant or tree grown from a seed.
  2. a tree not yet 3 feet (1 meter) high.
  3. any young plant, especially one grown in a nursery for transplanting.
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Origin of seedling

First recorded in 1650–60; seed + -ling1
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for seedling

Historical Examples

  • His hand had planted the seedling, and now—already the wilderness was beyond all control.

    The Golden Woman

    Ridgwell Cullum

  • It is a seedling of Concord out of the same lot of seedlings as Moore Early.

  • It is a seedling of Wyoming, which it resembles in fruit and vine and surpasses in both.

  • The fruit resembles that of Concord, of which it is probably a seedling.

  • But the branch may have sprung from the stock, which no doubt was a seedling.

British Dictionary definitions for seedling


  1. a very young plant produced from a seed
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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

Word Origin and History for seedling


"young plant developed from seed," 1650s, from seed (n.) + diminutive suffix -ling.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

seedling in Science


  1. A young plant, especially one that grows from a seed rather than from a cutting. See Note at germination.
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The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.