1A tropical American plant of the pea family, whose leaflets fold together and leaves bend down when touched. A common weed of sugar cane, it has become naturalized throughout the tropics.
- Mimosa pudica, family Leguminosae.
- Mimosa, the sensitive plant, folds up its leaves at night and opens them again in the day.
- In temperate climates, the sensitive plant is grown mainly as an indoor plant, usually for its fascinating behaviour.
- The sensitive plant commonly sold in stores as a curiosity is a member of the pea family.
2 informal A delicate or sensitive person.
- Perhaps the pressure was up because Godard was contested territory, favoured by the Screen group but also ‘the darling of the sensitive plants of Sight and Sound’.
- The implication is that poet-critics are some kind of sensitive plant, and their heads are easily turned.
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