January 17, 2012
prune (verb)
\PROON\ Hear it!
What does it mean?
1 a : to reduce by getting rid of matter that is not necessary or wanted b : to remove as unnecessary2 : to cut off the parts of a woody plant that are dead or not wanted
How do you use it?
"The men went down the rows first, pruning the thick grapevines and leaving a few long branches or 'canes' on each trunk. She followed, along with others, and tied the canes on the taut wire that was stretched post to post." (Pam MuÃħoz Ryan, Esperanza Rising)
Are you a word wiz?

Which of the following is NOT an example of pruning?

Pruning has to do with cutting—either literal cutting (like when you cut a plant's branches) or figurative cutting (like when you "cut" words from an essay or "cut" money from a budget). The idea of cutting is part of the word's history; it comes from a Latin word meaning "to cut around." This verb "prune" is completely unrelated to the noun "prune," which refers to a dried plum. That word comes from a different Latin word, one that means simply "plum."
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