Definition of terricolous in English:



  • 1(of an animal such as an earthworm) living on the ground or in the soil.

    • ‘The great majority of formicine genera, however, are both terricolous and cocoon-makers.’
    1. 1.1Botany (of a plant, especially a lichen) growing on soil or on the ground.
      • ‘The first phase of my research addressed the question ‘do distinct terricolous lichen assemblages occur within these badlands as opposed to a random distribution of species?’’
      • ‘The present paper investigates the hypothesis that accumulation of metal ions from soils by terricolous mosses is important in ameliorating SO 2 toxicity.’
      • ‘Similarly, some terricolous mosses are confined to calcareous soils in polluted areas, but are more widespread in non-polluted areas.’
      • ‘The proposition that tolerance of SO2 by these terricolous mosses depends on metabolic detoxification of dissolved bisulfite was investigated.’
      • ‘The book starts off with an colourful introduction to the pros and cons of the terms terricolous and epigaeous, and an overview of the terricolous lichen vegetation typology in Italy.’


Mid 19th century: from Latin terricola ‘earth dweller’ (from terra ‘earth’ + colere ‘inhabit’) + -ous.