One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
1Botany. Of a plant: able to withstand prolonged rainfall.
Of a plant: shade-loving.
Late 19th century; earliest use found in Journal of the Royal Microscopical Society. From ombro- + -philous, in sense 1 after German ombrophil; compare ombrophobous<br>1920s; earliest use found in Bulletin of the Torrey Botanical Club. Apparently an alteration of umbriphilous after ombro- or ombrophilous.
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