See under woodruff.
Origin of sweet woodruff
First recorded in 1790–1800
[woo d-ruh f, -ruhf]
any of several plants belonging to the genus Asperula or Galium, of the madder family, as G. odoratum (sweet woodruff), a fragrant plant with small white flowers.
Origin of woodruff
before 1000; Middle English woderove, Old English wudurofe, wudurife, equivalent to wudu wood1 + -rofe, -rife, element of uncertain meaning; compare German Rübe carrot
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019
a Eurasian and North African rubiaceous plant, Galium odoratum (or Asperula odorata), having whorls of leaves and clusters of fragrant white flowers
any of several rubiaceous plants of the genus Galium, esp G. odoratum (sweet woodruff), of Eurasia, which has small sweet-scented white flowers and whorls of narrow fragrant leaves used to flavour wine and liqueurs and in perfumery
Word Origin for woodruff
Old English wudurofe, from wood 1 + rōfe, related to Old High German ruoba, Middle Low German rōve (beet)root, Latin rēpere to creep
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