sensitive plant

noun
  1. Also called humble plant. a tropical American plant, Mimosa pudica, cultivated in greenhouses, having bipinnate leaves whose leaflets fold together when touched.
  2. any of various other plants that are sensitive to touch.

Origin of sensitive plant

First recorded in 1650–60
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for sensitive plant

Historical Examples of sensitive plant

  • The Sensitive-plant (Mimosa pudica) is a familiar example of this genus.

  • Directly any one touches you, you shrivel up like a sensitive-plant.

    The Duel

    A. I. Kuprin

  • The sensitive-plant shivers and droops its leaves at the slightest touch.

    Urania

    Camille Flammarion

  • In short, when you pressed this sensitive-plant, it always contracted its dimensions.

  • Mimosas will presently make a sensitive-plant of him who hangs his hammock beneath their shade.


British Dictionary definitions for sensitive plant

sensitive plant

noun
  1. a tropical American mimosa plant, Mimosa pudica, the leaflets and stems of which fold if touched
  2. any similar plant, such as the leguminous plant Cassia nictitans of E North America
  3. informal a person who is easily upset
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