low-lying vegetation or small trees growing beneath larger trees; underbrush.
the condition of being undergrown or undersized.
short, fine hair underlying longer, outer wool or fur.

Origin of undergrowth

First recorded in 1590–1600; under- + growth
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for undergrowth

Historical Examples of undergrowth

  • The stranger, whoever he was, had darted back in the undergrowth.

    The Rock of Chickamauga

    Joseph A. Altsheler

  • There was a tangle of undergrowth, and a heavy grove of palms.

    Things as They Are

    Amy Wilson-Carmichael

  • It has just shot out from that great clump of 163 undergrowth.

  • But the only reply was a furious crashing in the undergrowth.

    The Vagrant Duke

    George Gibbs

  • In a moment they were crashing through the undergrowth, Jesse and Andy in the lead.

    The Vagrant Duke

    George Gibbs

British Dictionary definitions for undergrowth



small trees, bushes, ferns, etc, growing beneath taller trees in a wood or forest
the condition of being undergrown
a growth of short fine hairs beneath longer ones; underfur
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 undergrowth

c.1600, from under + growth.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper