Definitions

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

  • n. A young tree.
  • n. A youth.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. A young tree, but bigger than a seedling.
  • n. A youngster, especially a male nearing maturity.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. A young tree.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. A young tree: especially applied to an immature forest-tree when its trunk attains three or four inches in diameter.
  • n. Figuratively A young person.
  • n. A greyhound that has never run in a coursing-match; a young greyhound from the time of whelping to the end of the first season thereafter.

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

  • n. young tree

Etymologies

sap +‎ -ling (Wiktionary)

Examples

  • If you have some money to spend, you could follow country road's advice and by a sapling from a nursery, which could cut your wait time by a few years.

    Has anyone ever tried to grow an oak tree from just an acorn?

  • This was one of the planted forests of Germany, where a sapling is put in when a big tree is taken out, to conserve the timber supply.

    Three Times and Out: A Canadian Boy's Experience in Germany

  • The sapling was the scion of a god, invulnerable, unapproachable, and so long-lived as to be, in practical terms, immortal.

    The Silver Spike

  • _Mammoth Red Clover_, also called sapling clover and pea-vine clover, closely resembles the red clover, but is ranker in growth and matures two or three weeks later.

    The First Book of Farming

  • Sown at different periods, with centuries between their growth, the latter exhibit every variety of age and form, from the decaying patriarchs of the forest, which have survived the blasts of some hundred years, to the infant sapling, which is only beginning to shoot under the shelter of a projecting rock or stem.

    Blackwood's Edinburgh Magazine — Volume 55, No. 340, February, 1844

  • The bird upon the sapling was a robin, the tiny round body perched upon his delicate legs, plump and bright plumaged for mating.

    The Shuttle

  • It may be known as sapling clover, and is accounted a perennial, though it is little more so than the red.

    Crops and Methods for Soil Improvement

  • Jim Hart, a man of singular height and thinness, whom Sol disrespectfully called the "Saplin '" -- that is, the sapling, a slim young tree -- was doing the cooking.

    The Forest Runners A Story of the Great War Trail in Early Kentucky

  • He was told to go to the farther side of the burn, and to stand under the sapling, which is at some little distance from the spot where the phantasm usually appears.

    The Alleged Haunting of B—— House

  • That he might find his way back again, he would, at every little distance, blaze, as it was called, a sapling, that is, chip off some of the bark with his hatchet.

    David Crockett

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