One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
1A Mexican plant of the agave family, with heavily scented white waxy flowers and a tuberous base. Unknown in the wild, it was formerly cultivated as a flavoring for chocolate; the flower oil is used in perfumery.
Polianthes tuberosa, family Agavaceae
- ‘Fragrant tuberoses, jackmentias, succulent cactus varieties, the milky bush and palm varieties, including the Royal Palms, can be used for avenue borders.’
- ‘The most sumptuous and heady of fragrances, these feature exotic flowers like Bulgarian rose, jasmine and tuberose, as well as mysterious musks, woods and other exotic essences.’
- ‘Cooling fountains mask traffic noise, while hummingbirds and butterflies explore the charms of tuberoses, heliotrope, and other plants chosen for their sensual appeal.’
- ‘There, after tilling and amending the soil, he planted roses, perennials, and a smattering of seasonal tubers, such as dahlias and tuberoses.’
- ‘Lavender is perfect for a summer afternoon, but a moonlit evening calls for the heady scent of gardenia or tuberose.’
2variant spelling of tuberous
Mid 17th century: the noun from Latin tuberosa, feminine of tuberosus ‘with protuberances’; the adjective from Latin tuberosus.
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