[ buhm-per krop ]
What does bumper crop mean?
A bumper crop is an unusually abundant harvest from a particular crop. The term is now most commonly used in a figurative way to refer to a large amount or influx of something (that’s often likened to a harvest).
Example: We have a bumper crop of candidates for the position.
The literal sense of the term usually refers to the harvest of a specific crop, but it can be applied to one at a particular farm or to the season’s harvest of a crop in general, such as across an entire region.
Example: Thanks to ideal growing conditions, California had a bumper crop of strawberries this year, and farmers’ markets are flush with them.
Where does bumper crop come from?
In bumper crop, crop is used in its usual noun sense referring collectively to produce being grown for harvesting—specifically the yield of such growing. The adjective bumper is much more specialized and is now primarily used in the term bumper crop. As an adjective, bumper means “unusually abundant” and derives from the obsolete (no-longer-used) verb bump, meaning “to bulge.” Picture containers bulging with the new harvest because there’s so much of it—that’s a bumper crop.
The term bumper crop has been used since at least the 1800s. Its figurative use increased in the 1900s.
Examples of bumper crop
Who uses bumper crop?
Bumper crop is perhaps most commonly used in a figurative way.
Blanket drive in Simi Valley brings bumper crop of donations for South Dakota reservation https://t.co/ny1ibUJpRc
— Ventura County Star (@vcstar) December 5, 2021
Fans of Afrofuturism will see a bumper crop of graphic novels and comic books this year. Stories that meld African culture and science fiction are booming, with influences as wide-ranging as space travel, Caribbean folklore and Janelle Monáe.https://t.co/LwKu8YeVA1
— The New York Times (@nytimes) February 8, 2021
It’s also still commonly used literally.
On a lighter note, who wants to help pick oranges? Bumper crop this year in our yard. pic.twitter.com/msLTP49xmE
— Frank Figliuzzi (@FrankFigliuzzi1) January 2, 2021
One upside of summer lasting into December: a bumper crop of Christmas peppers pic.twitter.com/DmW4mk92BU
— Forrest Wilder (@Forrest4Trees) December 4, 2021
Hey, how are everyone's pumpkins doing? I hope you have a bumper crop growing, because pumpkins are perfect for crafting all kinds of Halloween decorations. I can't wait to see photos! pic.twitter.com/NQvmC82maI
— Isabelle (@animalcrossing) October 4, 2020
This is not meant to be a formal definition of bumper crop like most terms we define on Dictionary.com, but is rather an informal word summary that hopefully touches upon the key aspects of the meaning and usage of bumper crop that will help our users expand their word mastery.