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in horticulture, an establishment or area for the propagation, breeding, and early cultivation of plants. In North America the term nursery originally specified a place where hardy woody plants, especially fruit trees, were started; but as the market for and interest in new varieties of garden plants increased, nurseries broadened their province to include the cultivation and development of all types of plants, including tropical varieties and annuals, and their sale either as seedlings ready for planting or as seeds. Until the advent of artificial irrigation and the use of vast greenhouses to control temperature, nurseries depended on natural conditions for success—as did the bulb nurseries of Holland, which were long famous for flowers and ornamental plants.

The modern nursery, staffed by horticulture experts and equipped with facilities for both experimental and mass production, supplies home gardeners, flower and fruit growers, farmers, and foresters with seeds and seedlings of specified qualities. Under nursery conditions varieties of plants have been bred that have greater yields and are hardier, longer blooming, and more disease resistant than those grown in the ordinary farm or garden, where controlled selection and hybridization is usually impractical (see plant breedingplant breeding,
science of altering the genetic pattern of plants in order to increase their value. Increased crop yield is the primary aim of most plant-breeding programs; advantages of the hybrids and new varieties developed include adaptation to new agricultural areas,
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). Graftinggrafting,
horticultural practice of uniting parts of two plants so that they grow as one. The scion, or cion, the part grafted onto the stock or rooted part, may be a single bud, as in budding, or a cutting that has several buds.
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 and buddingbudding,
type of grafting in which a plant bud is inserted under the bark of the stock (usually not more than a year old). It is best done when the bark will peel easily and the buds are mature, as in spring, late summer, or early autumn.
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 are also commonly used by nurseries to produce superior plants, and some plants are now propagated from cells grown in a sterile medium.

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1. A room or place set apart for small children.
2. A place where plants, shrubs, and small trees are grown, usually for transplanting elsewhere.
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of Architecture and Construction. Copyright © 2003 by McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.


1. a place where plants, young trees, etc., are grown commercially
2. an establishment providing residential or day care for babies and very young children; cr?che
3. short for nursery school
4. Billiards
a. a series of cannons with the three balls adjacent to a cushion, esp near a corner pocket
b. a cannon in such a series
Collins Discovery Encyclopedia, 1st edition © HarperCollins Publishers 2005
References in periodicals archive ?
The site is one of four in the ABC Day Nursery group.
However, when it comes to the safety and wellbeing of kids, nurseries will be given immediate warning to remove such violations, followed shortly by another, then a fine of QR10,000 to be deducted from the security sum deposited by the nursery at MADLSA.
Parents in Scotland will be entitled to 1140 hours of nursery provision per year for their children.
Amanda Hopkins, reviews manager of, said: "We would like to congratulate Chrysalis Day Nursery on being rated by parents as a top nursery in the North West.
Head teachers leading 251 nursery schools across the country have written a joint letter to the Chancellor, warning: "There is a real possibility that our schools will close.
The nursery beat six other nurseries in a public vote to take home the award for Best Staff Development.
Deputy Director of the DAE at its regional office Md Moniruzzaman said tree plantation campaign has become a successful social movement giving a further boost to nursery business.
"As a city council we have a duty to ensure there are enough nursery places available in the right locations across the city.
We have also received notices from the Cantonment Board Clifton [CBC] ordering us to leave,' said another nursery owner.