Share this entry

Share this page


Syllabification: per·en·ni·al
Pronunciation: /pəˈrenēəl

Definition of perennial in English:


1Lasting or existing for a long or apparently infinite time; enduring or continually recurring: his perennial distrust of the media perennial manifestations of urban crisis
More example sentences
  • Over the years, various stage productions have added their own theatrical styles to the show, ensuring it remains a perennial favourite of theatre-goers around the world.
  • A perennial favourite among modern readers are the bestsellers on subjects such as cookery, home improvement, self-help and personality development.
  • On Tuesday night, they grappled with a perennial favourite - whether to put the community's interest above their own.
1.1(Of a plant) living for several years: tarragon is perennial Compare with annual, biennial.
More example sentences
  • If you plant perennial herbs in the vegetable garden, set them off so they'll be easy to avoid during spring and fall tilling.
  • Fertilizers formulated for perennial flowers are usually fine.
  • They are also used quite effectively when planted in close groups among perennial shrubs.
1.2 [attributive] (Of a person) apparently permanently engaged in a specified role or way of life: he’s a perennial student
More example sentences
  • Few scholars of our time have so exemplified the permanent student and perennial teacher.
  • Their coach was cautious about his team's chances of finally ending its role as perennial second to Munich.
  • He puts up big numbers, fits perfectly within a team concept, and plays a central role on a perennial powerhouse.
1.3(Of a stream or spring) flowing throughout the year.
Example sentences
  • Northern Province is undoubtedly one of the most blessed parts of Zambia with abundant perennial streams that run throughout the year.
  • Among Anza-Borrego's wetlands is Coyote Creek, a perennial stream in the northwest corner of the park.
  • The once stable, slow - moving, marshy perennial river transformed into an unstable, flood-prone, intermittent stream.


Back to top  
A perennial plant.
Example sentences
  • The following is a list of suggested annuals, perennials and foliage plants.
  • Garden irises are hardy, long-lived perennials that need a minimum of care.
  • Lift and divide any herbaceous perennials that have grown too big or that have died out in the centre.


mid 17th century (in the sense 'remaining leafy throughout the year, evergreen'): from Latin perennis 'lasting the year through' + -ial.



Example sentences
  • What comes across most powerfully in this sumptuous work is the wonder, variety and sheer barminess of mankind's perennially fruitless quest for a truly ideal home.
  • He is scruffy, self-effacing and funny and conjures up all of these attributes in his perennially popular excursions to far-flung corners of the globe.
  • These roads are perennially in a state of disrepair.

Definition of perennial in:

Share this entry

Share this page


What do you find interesting about this word or phrase?