Definition of sapling in English:

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Pronunciation: /ˈsaplɪŋ/


1A young tree, especially one with a slender trunk.
Example sentences
  • Buck rubs were a common sight on fruit trees and saplings in the fencerows and woodlots.
  • Caging tree saplings and young shrubs is a good option where you have just a few to protect.
  • Watch for larger saplings and young trees to noticeably increase in girth and height, but you'll have to look closely to see the nearly imperceptible addition of one or two annual rings on bigger trees.
1.1 literary A young and slender or inexperienced person: what god or mortal reared up so fair a sapling?
More example sentences
  • He is a lawyer who has served ShrubCo since he was a sapling in Texas.
2A greyhound in its first year.
Example sentences
  • Patrons in attendance will also have the chance to bid for a choicely bred greyhound sapling by top sire - Hilltown.
  • When I explained what I had in mind, Larry, amazingly, said that he would be tickled to death to give us a sapling, and it would be the best sapling in his breeding program.


Middle English: from the noun sap1 + -ling.

For editors and proofreaders

Line breaks: sap|ling

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