Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • n. The act or process of initiating biological reproduction by insemination or pollination.
  • n. The union of male and female gametes to form a zygote.
  • n. The act or process of applying a fertilizer.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. The act or process of rendering fertile.
  • n. The act of fecundating or impregnating animal or vegetable gametes; esp., the process by which in flowers the pollen renders the ovule fertile, or an analogous process in flowerless plants; fecundation; impregnation.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. The act or process of rendering fertile.
  • n. The act of fecundating or impregnating animal or vegetable germs; esp., the process by which in flowers the pollen renders the ovule fertile, or an analogous process in flowerless plants; fecundation; impregnation.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. The act or process of rendering land fertile, fruitful, or productive.
  • n. Fecundation or impregnation of animals or plants; specifically, in bot., the process by which the pollen reaches and acts upon the ovules, and assures the production of fruit; also, the analogous process in cryptogams.
  • n. Also spelled fertilisation.
  • n. The artificial initiation of the process of development in an unfertilized egg by something else than a male cell. In 1899 Loeb found that after the unfertilized eggs of the sea-urchin have been immersed in a dilute solution of magnesium chlorid in sea-water they undergo normal or nearly normal development when they are transferred to pure sea-water. This has been held to be proof that fertilization is a chemical process; but more recent experiments have shown that a similar effect may be produced by cane-sugar, urea, sulphuric acid, strychnine, and even, in the silkworm, by gently brushing the eggs. The eggs in which the experiments are most successful are those that occasionally develop without fertilization under normal conditions and as there is no physical or chemical similarity between the objects that have been used with success, it seems probable that they do no more than to disturb the stability of the egg and permit its organic mechanism for development to work, and that the effect may be no more like that produced by the male cell than a jar which opens the valve of a steam-engine is like the engineer.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • n. making fertile as by applying fertilizer or manure
  • n. creation by the physical union of male and female gametes; of sperm and ova in an animal or pollen and ovule in a plant

Etymologies

fertilize +‎ -ation (Wiktionary)

Examples

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