• synonyms

tree fern

  1. any of various ferns, mostly tropical and chiefly of the family Cyatheaceae, that attain the size of trees, sending up a straight trunklike stem with foliage at the summit.
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Origin of tree fern

First recorded in 1840–50
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for tree fern

Historical Examples

  • The larva feeds on Cyathea dealbata (tree-fern) in September.

    New Zealand Moths and Butterflies

    G. V. Hudson

  • It may be the same day as that of the Tree-fern, or one as remote as you please from it, before or after.


    Philip Henry Gosse

  • A Tree-Fern, Dicksonia arborescens, with a young one near its base.

  • We had one tree-fern that rose from the centre of a rockery, and spread itself over it like a handsome umbrella.

  • Acrogen, ak′ro-jen, n. a plant that grows at the top chiefly, as a tree-fern.

British Dictionary definitions for tree fern

tree fern

  1. any of numerous large tropical ferns, mainly of the family Cyatheaceae, having a trunklike stem bearing fronds at the top
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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