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plant (one's) feet

To press one's feet firmly into the ground. Plant your feet—it'll help you to keep your balance.
See also: feet, plant

plant (something) in (something else)

1. Literally, to place or set a plant or the seed of a plant in something or some area in which to grow. We're planting herbs in little pots on the windowsill so we can watch them grow. They planted palm trees in their back yard, and it looks absolutely ridiculous. Make sure you plant the saplings in enough soil for the roots to spread out properly.
2. To fix something firmly or securely in something. We planted our feet in the dirt and began to push with all our might. I planted the hydraulic legs of the aerial lift in the ground so that the whole thing wouldn't topple over.
3. To introduce, establish, or implant something in someone's mind, emotions, subconscious, etc. My brother planted the idea of moving to New York City in my mind, and now I can't think of anything else to do! They aim to plant revolutionary intentions in the hearts of young men and women across the country.
4. To conceal or hide something in something or some place. The criminal gang planted the stolen goods in fast-food warehouses across the North East. We planted microphones in the lining of their luggage so we could hear their conversations during the entire trip.
5. To place something secretly in something or some place with the intention of causing a false understanding or interpretation upon discovery. We planted a bloody knife in his desk drawer so it would look like he was the one who killed his wife. The police officer was convicted of planting drugs in the clothing of pedestrians on the street in order to justify his many arrests.
See also: plant

plant (something) on

1. Literally, to grow a plant on top of something. Many people in the city have begun planting vegetables on their rooftops to help curb the cost of buying fresh produce.
2. To place and conceal something in or among someone's possessions or clothing without their knowledge or permission. The police officer was convicted of assaulting pedestrians and then planting knifes or drugs on them in order to justify the beatings. Be sure to mind your bags for the duration of your trip, as it is not unheard of for criminals to plant drugs and other contraband on innocent passengers in the hopes of smuggling it to their destinations without their knowledge.
See also: on, plant

plant a seed

1. To lay the groundwork for something that can develop or expand in the future. By involving the community in our plans, we hope to plant a seed for an event that will grow into a neighborhood tradition for years to come.
2. To introduce an idea to someone with the intention of making them more likely to eventually support or agree with it. I casually mentioned the idea of my mom watching Noah some weekends. Just planting a seed so she might be open to it down the line.
See also: plant, seed

plant a seed in (one's) head

To introduce an idea to one; to cause one to begin considering or thinking about something. You know, having an open dialogue with your kids about taboo things doesn't automatically plant a seed in their heads to start doing them. Crap, Jane told Bill her salary? That'll plant the seed in his head to ask for more money—which we don't have.
See also: head, plant, seed

plant a/the seed (of something)

To cause someone to have the inkling of a certain idea, thought, or feeling, especially in an indirect or unapparent manner. Jane's comments planted the seed of doubt in John's mind about Sarah's intentions. The kindness of these strangers planted a seed of hope in me that I hadn't felt in years.
See also: plant, seed

plant a/the seed of doubt (in someone's mind)

To cause someone to have doubts, worries, or concerns (about something); to introduce someone to a doubtful or worrisome idea. The candidate was doing very well in the polls six months ago, but it seems that this smear campaign has been effective in planting a seed of doubt in the minds of voters. Recent economic turbulence in the Eurozone has planted the seed of doubt about the strength of the economy's recovery. Every time you act suspiciously like that, it plants a seed of doubt in my mind about your fidelity.
See also: doubt, of, plant, seed

plant one on (one)

1. To strike one. If that bully keeps taking my lunch money every day, I'm gonna plant one on him! I have a black eye because this jerk at school planted one on me in the recess yard.
2. To kiss one. He's so cute, I just want to go over and plant one on him! Well? Did he plant one on you at the end of the date?
See also: on, one, plant

plant out

To transplant a seedling or plant from a sheltered location, such as indoors or within a greenhouse, to the ground outside. You'll want to wait until it is warmer outside before you plant out your tomatoes. You can plant these out as soon as there are several strong leaves on the stem.
See also: out, plant

plant pears for your heirs

proverb Take action that will benefit your heirs. Pear trees traditionally took such a long time to yield fruit that one would plant them for the benefit of the next generation. You should look into setting up some sort of trust fund that will grow over time and help your children when you're no longer here. Plant pears for your heirs, as they say.
See also: for, heir, pear, plant

plant the seeds (of something)

1. To do something that ensures a certain outcome in the future, especially an unfortunate or tragic one. They've been planting the seeds of their own downfall with their anti-consumer practices over the last few years.
2. To cause someone to have certain thoughts or feelings, usually negative ones. The over-zealous policing of opposing opinions has planted the seeds of discontent among the population.
See also: plant, seed

soap plant

Any plant that produces a lather that can be used for cleansing. Examples include the California soap plant, the soapberry, and the soapwort. My mom makes all-natural soap out of soap plants.
See also: plant, soap
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2022 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.

plant something in something

1. Lit. to set out a plant in something; to sow seeds in something. Are you going to plant tomatoes in these pots? What have you planted in the garden?
2. Fig. to put an idea in someone's brain, head, or thinking. Who planted that silly idea in your head? I want to plant this concept in her thinking.
3. Fig. Inf. to conceal something in something. The crook planted the money in the back of the refrigerator. What did the cops plant in your pockets?
See also: plant

plant something on someone

1. to hide incriminating evidence on a person for later discovery and use in prosecution. (Drugs. Allegedly a police practice used to entrap drug offenders.) The cops planted crack on Richard and then arrested him for carrying it. Don't touch me! You'll plant something on me!
2. to conceal narcotics or other contraband on an unsuspecting person for the purpose of smuggling. (This person will bear the risk of discovery and arrest.) The crooks planted the stuff on a passenger, but couldn't find him when the plane landed. Someone had planted coke on me, and the airport security officer found it.
See also: on, plant
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of American Idioms and Phrasal Verbs. © 2002 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.

sow the seeds of something


plant the seeds of something

1. If something or someone sows or plants the seeds of a future problem, they start the process which causes that problem to develop. An incident then occurred that was to sow the seeds of the invasion's eventual failure. It was this racist policy that planted the seeds of today's crisis in Africa.
2. You can also sow or plant the seeds of something good or something that you want to happen. With this overall strategy, they hope to sow the seeds of economic recovery. Ministers had spent five years planting the seeds of reform. I had planted the seeds of doubt in their minds.
See also: of, seed, something, sow
Collins COBUILD Idioms Dictionary, 3rd ed. © HarperCollins Publishers 2012

plant/sow the ˈseeds of something

start a process which will develop into something large, important, etc: What first planted the seeds of doubt in your mind?The seeds of conflict were sown when oil was discovered on the border between the two countries.
See also: of, plant, seed, something, sow
Farlex Partner Idioms Dictionary © Farlex 2017


1. tv. to strike a blow (to a particular place on someone). The boxer planted a good blow on his opponent’s shoulder.
2. n. a spy who secretly participates in criminal activities in order to inform on the criminals. Don’t tell everything you know. You don’t know who’s a plant and who isn’t.

plant something on someone

1. tv. to hide incriminating evidence on a person for later discovery and use in prosecution. (see also flake.) The cops planted snow on Bart and then arrested him for carrying it.
2. tv. to conceal narcotics or other contraband on an unsuspecting person for the purpose of smuggling. (This person will bear the risk of discovery and arrest.) The crooks planted the stuff on a passenger but couldn’t find him when the plane landed.
See also: on, plant, someone, something
McGraw-Hill's Dictionary of American Slang and Colloquial Expressions Copyright © 2006 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc. All rights reserved.
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References in periodicals archive ?
"Besides being busier than ever, the questions that clients are asking us are specific to information that is present from the green building movement like, 'Will this plant clean the air, will those plants help us get LEED credits,' things like that."
The team inserted this RNA-making gene next to a piece of cotton-plant DNA that activates genes only in seeds, so gossypol production would continue elsewhere in the plants.
Frank Sanchez, GM of fiber operations for the newly combined FMT and Durango McKinley Recycling divisions, says the Albuquerque, N.M., Phoenix and El Paso, Texas, recycling plants provide nearly 60 percent of the furnish needed for the Prewitt mill.
To figure out the purpose of the red pigment, Hoch and his coworkers bred mutant plants that can't make anthocyanins and compared them with plants that do make anthocyanins.
The production capacity may be as much as 400 tons per hour for producing base material from concrete, while the same plant may produce 150 to 200 tons per hour of aggregates from asphalt or other concrete materials.
A dynamite little combination of plants for fans of flaming colors is Cardinal-flower (Lobelia cardinalis) with Fire-pink (Silene virginica), Eastern Columbine (Aquilegia canadensis), and Indian Pink (Spigelia marilandica).
In addition, Dow AgroSciences is applying this expertise in plant genetics to develop plant-made solutions for improved animal health and food safety.
Despite the large number of materials to handle and the high throughput, the Vienna plant shipped more than 700,000 containers last year and attained better than 99.9% on-time delivery of parts to more than 100 customers.
Plant Locations: Olympia, WA; Albany, NY; Bury, Lancashire, England
In most cases this means coal-fired plants, which produce significantly more greenhouse gases--primarily carbon dioxide--than other carbon-based sources such as natural gas-fired generators.
Up until 1990, the EPA did compacatively little to control emissions from coat-fired power plants. The agency had generally relied on two longstanding command-and-control programs embedded in the 1970 Clean Mr Act to control air pollution, the most important of which was the setting of national air quality standards.
Plant A has four gas-fired melting furnaces: three 6,000-lb.
Always intrigued with the plight of Hawaii's native plants, he decided to try his hand at rescuing some of them, and the rest is history.
Amazingly, because many nuclear power plants have not been abiding by current regulations to put up proven fire barriers.
"Five years ago, if you had prepared the same list, it would have been dominated by natural gas plants," says Tom Sarkus, the director of advanced energy systems at the National Energy Technology Laboratory, speaking from his office in Pittsburgh.