One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
1The main axis of a leaf or a fern frond.
2Specifically. An expanded and hardened leaf-base found in certain quillworts (family Isoetaceae), providing protection for dormant meristematic tissue.
3Zoology. A broad, flattened limb of the kind found in branchiopod crustaceans.
Late 19th century; earliest use found in Frederic Bower (1855–1948), botanist. From phyllo- + -podium.
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