Definition of peat in US English:



  • 1A brown deposit resembling soil, formed by the partial decomposition of vegetable matter in the wet acidic conditions of bogs and fens, and often cut out and dried for use as fuel and in gardening.

    ‘cuttings are rooted in a homemade mixture of equal parts peat and sand’
    as modifier ‘a peat bog’
    • ‘There is no air in a peat bog and, therefore, undrained peat is made up of 90% water.’
    • ‘An energy tax would penalise industries which use energy based on fossil fuel, including oil, coal and peat.’
    • ‘It provides a good usable soil amendment for the garden and is certainly much less expensive than peat.’
    • ‘The climate was temperate but windy, the terrain a mixture of downland, rocky hills and peat bogs.’
    • ‘It may be desirable to amend the soil with sand or peat.’
    • ‘The reason why it was so well preserved was that it was recovered from a peat bog.’
    • ‘It is believed to get its name from a long gone drainage channel which ran over a peat bog.’
    • ‘The route meanders up, over the rocks and then more peat bog.’
    • ‘Potting mixes containing peat seem to be particularly affected by fungus gnats.’
    • ‘Two rivers flowed between us and our destination, a miniature hut lost in an expanse of peat bog.’
    • ‘Other garden peat can contain chemicals that can harm discus fish so just be careful.’
    • ‘In marked contrast, needles of a variety of conifers are frequently abundant in peat and lake deposits.’
    • ‘The largest frozen peat bog in the world, lying in western Siberia, is melting, according to Russian scientists.’
    • ‘A lot of East Anglia was covered in peat bog, until they decided to drain it.’
    • ‘Dig materials such as straw, peat, compost, and leaves into the soil, or lay them on as mulch.’
    • ‘The directive does require farmers to supply pigs with rooting materials such as straw, hay, wood, sawdust, compost or peat.’
    • ‘Potting soil contains rich organic material such as peat and various composted barks.’
    • ‘At 350 hectares, Foulshaw Moss is one of the largest remaining areas of peat bog habitat in Britain.’
    • ‘Place the seeds in a plastic bag with a mixture of sand and peat or other suitable growing mix.’
    • ‘The plant material, which forms deposits of peat locally, is likely the source of the phosphate.’
    fertilizer, mulch
    View synonyms
    1. 1.1usually peats A cut piece of peat.
      ‘he reached forward to add a couple of peats to the fire’
      • ‘First the stove had to be stoked up with peats, then I changed, dried my hair and made a cup of coffee.’
      • ‘Even the locals who do cut the peats are mostly just doing it to have a big fire at New Year.’
      • ‘Back into the sitting room they pulled the peats out of the fire and carried them outside on a shovel.’
      • ‘The weather held good for us yesterday so we took the opportunity to get up on the moor and bag up the peats ready to bring in.’
      • ‘I have written about peat-cutting, drying, stacking and burning for different jobs, but last week I learned of a method of stacking peats that I had never heard of before.’


Middle English: from Anglo-Latin peta, perhaps of Celtic origin.