lie fallow

lie fallow

1. Of soil, to remain unseeded after having been plowed. Most of the farm has lain fallow this season in a desperate attempt to make it fertile once more.
2. Of a talent, idea, state of mind, etc., to remain undeveloped or unutilized. He had such potential as an artist, but his skill lay fallow as he tried to follow in his father's footsteps as a businessman. I've always had an idea for a book I'd like to write, but it's lain fallow for so long that I don't know that I could ever make it a reality.
See also: lie

lie fallow

 
1. Lit. [for farmland] to exist unplanted for a period of time. The fields lay fallow under the burning sun. It had been too wet to plant last spring.
2. Fig. [for a skill and talent] to remain unused and neglected. You should not let your talent lie fallow. Practice the piano before you forget how to play it. His writing had lain fallow for so long that he could hardly write a proper sentence.
See also: lie
References in classic literature ?
All your skill was used up ages ago in Palestine, and you must lie fallow for a thousand years to git strength for more deeds!' A boy came here t'other day asking for a job, and said his name was Matt, and when we asked him his surname he said he'd never heard that 'a had any surname, and when we asked why, he said he supposed his folks hadn't been
When an acre of ground has produced long and well, we let it lie fallow and rest for a season; we take no man clear across the continent in the same coach he started in--the coach is stabled somewhere on the plains and its heated machinery allowed to cool for a few days; when a razor has seen long service and refuses to hold an edge, the barber lays it away for a few weeks, and the edge comes back of its own accord.
Many grounds that should have been covered have been left to lie fallow. Nevertheless, we think the country is not backward,' Comrade Taiwo said.
It is thus that especially among our race of the guilty species the brains of a whole half of humanity are condemned to lie fallow because of their sex.
Shrinking woodlands, the absence of the once common practice of letting fields lie fallow and especially rapidly expanding expanses of mono-crops have each played a role, according to the Guardian news.
'Six years you shall sow your land and gather in its produce, but the seventh year you shall let it rest and lie fallow, that the poor of your people may eat; and what they leave, the beasts of the field may eat.
He said: "If you have an idea it is not clear where you go and I think lots of really good ideas lie fallow because of that.
From a religious standpoint there should not be a problem in Israel certifying marijuana as kosher as it's a plant, and like all plants grown overseas, the laws of shmita (every seven years the land in Israel must lie fallow -- ed.) and tithes do not apply.
And yet, across Tyneside there are large areas of brownfield land that lie fallow for reasons unknown.
Thilde Bech Bruun of the University of Copenhagen, there is evidence that previous studies have most likely underestimated the amount of carbon stored in fields that lie fallow in swidden systems.
(14) If ownership includes the right to let property lie fallow or gather dust, this fact is baffling.
state has forced farmers to let fields lie fallow and left communities reliant on well water, with bone-dry brush fueling wildfires in temperatures of more than 100 degrees Fahrenheit (38 Celsius).
And then lie fallow for a bit until the next joyless reunion.
"Glastonbury always takes a break every few years so the site can lie fallow," Gadson says of the fest, which will return in 2013.
Axa are not minded to let it lie fallow for a long time."