- a threadlike, leafless organ of climbing plants, often growing in spiral form, which attaches itself to or twines round some other body, so as to support the plant.
Origin of tendril
1530–40; earlier tendrel, variant (perhaps by dissimilation) of Middle English tendren, tendron < Middle French tendron shoot, sprout, cartilage
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018
Examples from the Web for tendrils
As she leaned in to blow out the candles, tendrils of smoke wafted up above her head.Donna's Day
September 11, 2010
The tendrils at the ends move with a life of their own, straining to be joined.
MACRO SHOT – The tendrils INTERWINE with gentle undulations.
Put four pounds of pure honey into a still, with twelve handfuls of the tendrils of vines, and the same quantity of rosemary tops.
And she touched her forehead, where tendrils of fair hair were blowing in the breeze.The Burning Spear
Canes numerous, with some bloom at the nodes; tendrils intermittent.
Canes thick, light to dark brown; tendrils continuous, bifid.
They are climbing or running plants, and provided with tendrils.Elements of Structural and Systematic Botany
Douglas Houghton Campbell
- a specialized threadlike part of a leaf or stem that attaches climbing plants to a support by twining or adhering
- something resembling a tendril, such as a wisp of hair
C16: perhaps from Old French tendron tendril (confused with Old French tendron bud), from Medieval Latin tendō tendon
Word Origin and History for tendrils
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
- A slender, coiling plant part, often a modified leaf or leaf part, that helps support the stem of some climbing angiosperms by clinging to or winding around an object. Peas, squash, and grapes produce tendrils.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.