go to seed

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Related to going to seed: run to seed, gone to seed

go to seed

To look shabby, unhealthy, or unattractive due to a lack of care or attention. Wow, Tim's really started going to seed ever since he had kids. The house has gone to seed with those college kids living there.
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Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2015 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.

go to seed

 
1. and run to seed Lit. [for a plant] to grow long enough to produce seed; [for a plant] to spend its energy going to seed. The lettuce went to seed and we couldn't eat it. Plants like that ought not to be allowed to go to seed.
2. and run to seed Fig. [for a lawn or a plant] to produce seeds because it has not had proper care. You've got to mow the grass. It's going to seed. Don't let the lawn go to seed. It looks so—seedy!
3. Fig. [for something] to decline in looks, status, or utility due to lack of care. (The same as run to seed.) This old coat is going to seed. Have to get a new one. The front of the house is going to seed. Let's get it painted.
See also: go, seed
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of American Idioms and Phrasal Verbs. © 2002 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.

go to seed

or

run to seed

1. If someone goes to seed or runs to seed, they allow themselves to become fat, unhealthy and unattractive as they get older. He was big and fleshy, like an athlete gone to seed. Once he had carried a lot of muscle but now he was running to seed.
2. If a place goes to seed or runs to seed, it becomes dirty and untidy because people stop taking care of it. The report painted a depressing picture of an America going to seed, its bridges and roads falling apart, its national parks neglected. When she died, the house went to seed. Note: When vegetables such as lettuce go to seed, they produce flowers and seeds, and are no longer fit to eat.
See also: go, seed
Collins COBUILD Idioms Dictionary, 3rd ed. © HarperCollins Publishers 2012

go (or run) to seed

1 (of a plant) cease flowering as the seeds develop. 2 deteriorate in condition, strength, or efficiency.
See also: go, seed
Farlex Partner Idioms Dictionary © Farlex 2017

go/run to ˈseed

(informal) (of a person) become untidy or dirty because you no longer care about your appearance, etc: I was very surprised when I saw her. She has really run to seed in the last few months.This idiom refers to the fact that when the flower in a plant dies, seeds are produced.
See also: go, run, seed
Farlex Partner Idioms Dictionary © Farlex 2017

run to seed, to

To become old and decrepit. Plants that are allowed to set seed after flowering either become bitter to the taste (lettuce) or will not bloom as well the following year (daffodils, tulips). Henry Fielding used the term figuratively in an essay of 1740: “For Virtue itself by growing too exuberant and . . . by running to seed changes its very nature.”
See also: run
The Dictionary of Clichés by Christine Ammer Copyright © 2013 by Christine Ammer
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References in periodicals archive ?
you hardly notice them going to seed. A beautiful woman or beautiful
You will have fewer weeds next year if you keep them from going to seed now.
DEADHEAD any flowers in full bloom or past bloom, to prevent them going to seed.
Cut the flower stalks off at the soil line once they finish blooming to prevent the plant from going to seed.
To avoid weed problems, farmers can either prevent weeds from growing and going to seed or create conditions that destroy weed seeds before the next crop is grown.
Q I LOST my crop of beetroot this year because of going to seed or bolting.