Definition of germinate in English:



  • 1 (of a seed or spore) begin to grow and put out shoots after a period of dormancy.

    • ‘When contaminated seeds are planted, bunt spores germinate in the presence of moisture and infect the wheat seedlings.’
    • ‘Seeds of all species have an optimal depth at which they germinate best, depending on soil conditions.’
    • ‘None of the species studied was able to germinate under anoxia.’
    • ‘Many flower seeds simply will not germinate at high temperatures.’
    • ‘Dormancy is defined as the inability of a viable seed to germinate under conditions otherwise adequate for germination.’
    • ‘Peppers will not germinate well at room temperature - keep them at a constant 80 degrees for best success.’
    • ‘The spores germinate in a film of water and penetrate into the plant tissue.’
    • ‘Dashed segments of the line indicate where viable seeds do not germinate at low temperatures.’
    • ‘Beside surviving dehydration, the dwarf embryos were able to germinate and to develop into normal plants.’
    • ‘They did germinate on synthetic medium, but were inviable when streaked onto solid rich medium.’
    • ‘For example, seeds germinating in soil survive submergence by germinating anaerobically.’
    • ‘The stigma is the part of the orchid on which pollen grains germinate.’
    • ‘Breakdown takes place after a period of rest when seeds germinate and seedlings start growing.’
    • ‘Seeds of all four species germinated in all plots at both treatment locations.’
    • ‘Keep your soil moist after planting and the seeds will germinate readily in about a week.’
    • ‘As weeds germinate, hand pull, hoe or spray with a weed killer.’
    • ‘If snow cover is reliable, sow seeds late and they'll germinate in spring.’
    • ‘Fresh seeds of many arctic and alpine plant species germinate readily without any cold stratification treatment.’
    • ‘Infant botulism occurs when ingested spores germinate and colonize the infant's gastrointestinal tract.’
    • ‘The oats will germinate quickly and protect the young hay seedlings from weed pressure early in the season.’
    • ‘Sprinkle with grass seed, which will quickly germinate and cover the gap.’
    sprout, put forth shoots, shoot, shoot up, bud, put forth buds, develop buds, form buds
    View synonyms
    1. 1.1[with object]Cause (a seed or spore) to germinate.
      • ‘When one plants there must be enough moisture to germinate the seeds so that the crops emerge at the same time.’
      • ‘After Apollo 14 landed, a Forest Service scientist germinated the seeds at NASA's manned space center at Houston.’
      • ‘The collected soil samples were germinated in plastic trays.’
      • ‘I recommend you use the same soilless mix used for germinating the seeds.’
      • ‘Mrs Perry said pumpkins did not take much work and her daughter had her own greenhouse and had germinated the seeds herself.’
      • ‘Seeds were germinated under sterile conditions on 1% agar in tissue culture tubes in a growth chamber.’
      • ‘Two series of experiments were conducted to determine if meditation on the water used to germinate seeds could affect their germination rate.’
      • ‘The seeds were stratified and germinated in a greenhouse at Rutgers University.’
      • ‘Sixty healthy rosettes, germinated in a greenhouse in March 1986, were used.’
      • ‘Although windowsills are good places to germinate seeds, they do have some drawbacks.’
      • ‘You most often see this where rice is grown as rice needs to be grown on precisely level fields that contain a shallow layer of water to germinate the seed.’
      • ‘An advantage to doing this in the winter is that nature provides enough water to germinate the seeds, whereas it is necessary to sprinkle the areas during other times of the year.’
      • ‘Fall rains and winter snows will provide moisture to germinate seeds.’
      • ‘Seeds were germinated in the dark on filter papers moistened with deionized water.’
      • ‘Following cold stratification, seeds were germinated in the watered plug trays under natural day lengths in the greenhouses of Brown University and NCSU.’
      • ‘One of the ideas was to use empty yoghurt pots to germinate seeds.’
      • ‘Pollen was germinated in vitro in liquid medium for 10 min and harvested by centrifugation.’
      • ‘Legume pollen is normally difficult to germinate on artificial medium.’
      • ‘Sterilized seeds were germinated in the dark at room temperature using two rooting environments.’
      • ‘Seeds were germinated on wet filter paper and grown without the addition of ABA.’
      sprout, put forth shoots, shoot, shoot up, bud, put forth buds, develop buds, form buds
      View synonyms
    2. 1.2Come into existence and develop.
      ‘the idea germinated and slowly grew into an obsession’
      • ‘These are tools for helping communities to germinate, develop and extend themselves.’
      • ‘Frequent interruptions, whether by meetings, phone calls or e-mails, keep new ideas from germinating.’
      • ‘But, as Hollywood has often illustrated, the seed of a worthwhile idea does not necessarily germinate into a compelling motion picture.’
      • ‘The idea for this recipe germinated during a trip to the United States where we had various versions of miso-glazed sea bass.’
      • ‘While we need markets, we also need room for the visionary ideas, accidental discoveries, and embryonic notions that germinate into real breakthroughs, if only they have the space to grow.’
      • ‘The basic ideas germinate for a long time.’
      • ‘The idea for Gubu Nation - a collection of more than 50 uniquely Irish tales during the country's development - germinated during this time.’
      • ‘An important idea is germinating in this passage.’
      • ‘Schuman's sixth also unfolds in one movement from a germinating idea and one thing seems to lead inexorably to another.’
      • ‘We think that the idea that he was at a disadvantage has germinated very slowly over the years.’
      • ‘When I read the poets of my bioregion I feel their words slide off the printed page, germinate - take root.’
      • ‘The second development, of no less significance, had been germinating since the mid-nineties.’
      • ‘The idea to become a priest had been germinating for several years.’
      • ‘All in all, this 14th track on the album also appreciates the democracy that is slowly germinating in the Southern African former British colony.’
      • ‘The idea of writing a book about her experiences germinated however, in the back of her mind.’
      • ‘Through a combination of her determination and solid common sense, the club was fully operational within a few months of the idea germinating.’
      • ‘He also has two spin-off business ideas germinating.’
      • ‘The film idea germinated when he returned home in 1998.’
      • ‘The short stories published by authors in various rags are the hidden store of ideas for the larger and more onerous novels that germinate from them, mostly for the lucrative rewards.’
      • ‘As an expert counsellor you know love has to germinate slowly over a long period.’
      develop, take root, grow, spring up, arise, emerge, evolve, mature, expand, enlarge, spread, advance, progress
      View synonyms


Late 16th century: from Latin germinat- sprouted forth, budded, from the verb germinare, from germen, germin- sprout, seed.