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This week's theme
Words related to the shaping of trees

This week's words
espalier
topiary
pleach
bonsai
pollard

An elephant topiary
National Museum, Bangkok Elephant topiary, National Museum, Bangkok, Thailand
(Image source: ItchyFingers)

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A.Word.A.Day
with Anu Garg

topiary

PRONUNCIATION:
(TOE-pee-er-ee)

MEANING:
noun: The art of creating sculptures by clipping, trimming, and training plants. Also, such a sculpture or garden.
adjective: Of or related to a tree or garden shaped in such a way.

ETYMOLOGY:
From Latin topiarius (ornamental gardener), from topia (ornamental gardening), from Greek topos (place).

USAGE:
"Without formal training -- just passion, energy, and discards from the local nursery -- Pearl Fryar began sculpting his acreage into a dazzling array of abstract topiary art, earning this sharecropper's son the local 'Yard of the Month' award. Nowadays, Pearl's hugely expanded, wildly impressive topiary garden has become a major tourist attraction. Inspired yet? Wait till you see the winning documentary "A Man Named Pearl", which not only makes you want to get out there and play Edward Scissorhands but can, at least for its 78 jazz-and-gospel infused minutes, help replenish one's faith in humanity."
Kevin Thomas; Movie Reviews; Los Angeles Times; Jul 25, 2008.

"But Warriors players won't say why they've made a mutual pact to let their facial topiary run wild."
It All Sounds a Bit Hairy; Sunday Star Times (New Zealand); Aug 31, 2008.

See more usage examples of topiary in Vocabulary.com's dictionary.

A THOUGHT FOR TODAY:
Some people with great virtues are disagreeable, while others with great vices are delightful. -Francois, duc de La Rochefoucauld, moralist (1613-1680)

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