Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition.

  • noun Plankton that consists of minute plants and other photosynthetic organisms, including cyanobacteria, diatoms, and dinoflagellates.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • noun That part of the plankton of any body of water which consists of plants, usually algæ.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.

  • noun plankton which obtain energy by photosynthesis

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

  • noun photosynthetic or plant constituent of plankton; mainly unicellular algae

Etymologies

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

From phyto- +‎ plankton. From Ancient Greek φυτόν (phuton, "plant") + πλαγκτόν (plankton), neuter of πλαγκτός (planktos, "wandering"). However, they are no longer classified as plants, so the terminology is showing a historical meaning.

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