One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
1The common Eurasian yarrow.
- ‘Then, gardens in England were enriched with many species not previously known, among them plants which soon became very popular, like several campanulas, carnations, and milfoils.’
2A widely distributed and highly invasive aquatic plant with whorls of fine submerged leaves and wind-pollinated flowers.
Genus Myriophyllum, family Haloragaceae
- ‘He rocks the boat under his feet so we bob and toss through the green skim of milfoil.’
- ‘Lakes and ponds have buttonbush, pickerel weed, bulltongue arrowhead, horned bladderwort, water milfoil, and water-shield growing in the water.’
- ‘Totally submerged are bladderwort, coontail, and water milfoil.’
- ‘The common kinds include the large family of pondweeds, coontail, water milfoil, water weeds, and naiads (Najas).’
- ‘In half of the sites studied, algae, mosses and plants such as water milfoil that had previously been absent were becoming abundant.’
- ‘If the vegetation is primarily milfoil, musk grass, pondweed, or naiad, these stocking rates are recommended.’
- ‘A submerged aquatic weed that invades lakes, ponds, and reservoirs, milfoil often restricts natural water flow, clogs water intakes, and eliminates native species from ecosystems.’
Middle English: via Old French from Latin millefolium, from mille ‘thousand’ + folium ‘leaf’.
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