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cactus Line breaks: cac¦tus
Pronunciation: /ˈkaktəs/

Definition of cactus in English:

noun (plural cacti ˈkaktʌɪ or cactuses)

A succulent plant with a thick fleshy stem which typically bears spines, lacks leaves, and has brilliantly coloured flowers. Cacti are native to arid regions of the New World and are cultivated elsewhere, especially as pot plants.
  • Family Cactaceae: numerous genera and species
Example sentences
  • We are rich with saguaros, prickly pear, and cholla cacti, and paloverde, and mesquite trees.
  • Prickly pear cacti and large agave succulents, introduced from Mexico, grow everywhere in the north of the island.
  • Scaling and barking injuries occur on stem surfaces of saguaro cacti.

Phrases

in the cactus

1
Australian /NZ informal In difficulty or trouble: he had promised to fetch Bobby by six; it was now close to midnight and he’s in the cactus
More example sentences
  • "Victor, you've put us all in the cactus; thanks a bloody million!"
  • He turned on his heel and walked out saying, "I'm in the cactus again."
  • Fine hold him for the police but throw him in the cactus you just got your boss a lawsuit.

Derivatives

cactaceous

1
Pronunciation: /kakˈteɪʃəs/
adjective
Example sentences
  • Named in honor of the French scholar Nicolas-Claude Fabri de Peiresc, the genus Pereskia boasts the unique characteristic of being one of the few cactaceous genera to bear true leaves.
  • The most common of these is E. canariensis with the classic cactaceous habit.
  • If you wish to camp, hike or simply to spend a day afield between encino forests and pine and cactaceous scrubs, you may see some deer, wild burro, pumas, cats, coyotes, bald eagles and a diverse selection of snakes.

Origin

Early 17th century (in the sense 'cardoon'): from Latin, from Greek kaktos 'cardoon'.

Words that rhyme with cactus

saltus • Diophantus • Sanctus

Definition of cactus in:

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