from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition
- n. A tropical Asian plant (Desmodium motorium) having trifoliolate compound leaves, whose lateral leaflets are very small and move by jerks under the influence of sunshine.
from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English
- A tick trefoil (Meibomia gyrans formerly Desmodium gyrans), native of the East Indies; it is a leguminous plant whose lateral leaflets jerk up and down like the arms of a semaphore, and also rotate on their axes.
from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
- n. The East Indian Desmodium gyrans, a plant with trifoliolate leaves, of which the lateral leaflets are very small and remarkable for their spontaneous jerking motion, suggesting signaling.
from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.
- n. erect tropical Asian shrub whose small lateral leaflets rotate on their axes and jerk up and down under the influence of sunshine
Sorry, no etymologies found.