(redirected from ripest)
Also found in: Dictionary, Thesaurus, Legal, Encyclopedia.

be ripe for the picking

To be in an ideal position or at the perfect stage to be utilized, benefited or profited from, taken advantage of, exploited, etc. (Alludes to fruit being at the right stage to be harvested.) Assert our brand early and aggressively enough, and this new market will be ripe for the picking. I heard that massive company just dropped their current PR team—that contract is ripe for the picking! This land is ripe for the picking if we can get the locals to sign over the rights to it.
See also: picking, ripe

early ripe, early rotten

A child prodigy will likely lose their abilities as they age. A: "But you played the piano so beautifully when you were younger." B: "I know. I guess it's true what they say—early ripe, early rotten."
See also: early, rotten

live to a ripe old age

To live to an especially old age. You won't be living to a ripe old age if you keep eating all that junk food! My grandmother on my dad's side lived to the ripe old age of 108.
See also: age, live, old, ripe

ripe for (something)

Particularly ready or in need of something; in the condition that most invites or calls for something to happen. In the absence of the dictator's authoritarian regime, the country is ripe for the rise of extremist groups. The industry claims that it has instituted safety standards, but in reality it is ripe for reform.
See also: ripe

Early ripe, early rotten,

 and Soon ripe, soon rotten.
Prov. A child with extraordinary talent or intelligence will probably lose those qualities by the time he or she grows up. Jill: Philip was such a fine young boy; I'm surprised he's become such a good-for-nothing adult. Jane: Early ripe, early rotten. Jane: You must be very proud of your little boy. He seems so mature for his age. Ellen: I'm afraid it won't last. You know what they say: "Soon ripe, soon rotten."
See also: early, rotten

ripe old age

a very old age. Mr. Smith died last night, but he lived to a ripe old age—99. All the Smiths seem to reach a ripe old age.
See also: age, old, ripe

time is ripe

Prov. It is the most favorable time to do something. You ought to buy a house this year. Prices are so low, and you have enough money saved for a down payment. The time is ripe. Since Joe was in a good mood, I judged that the time was ripe to ask him for the favor I needed.
See also: ripe, time

when the time is ripe

Fig. at exactly the right time. I'll tell her the good news when the time is ripe. When the time is ripe, I'll bring up the subject again.
See also: ripe, time

ripe old age

An age advanced in years, as in I expect to live to a ripe old age. The adjective ripe here means "fully developed physically and mentally," but the current use of the idiom usually just signifies a long lifespan. [Second half of 1300s]
See also: age, old, ripe

time is ripe

This is the right moment for something, as in The time is ripe for a revival of that play. Shakespeare used this term (and may have originated it) in 1 Henry IV (1:3): "Letters shall direct your course when time is ripe."
See also: ripe, time


1. mod. alcohol intoxicated. Yes, they were ripe all right. Stinking drunk.
2. mod. foul; smelly. Whooey! This place is ripe. What died?
3. mod. crude; raunchy. Your jokes are a bit ripe.
References in periodicals archive ?
Apparently, the ripest odor emanates from our armpits.
The ripest roles in pantomime and Christmas shows invariably go to villains.
This sounds entertaining, but isn't because auteur Gilroy ignores even the ripest targets for satire, such as the plaintiffs' contingency-fee attorneys, always a colorful subspecies (Homo avaricious vulgaris).
Kopi Luwak or the civet cat, as it often referred, live in the foliage of plantations across Southeast Asia are extremely fussy and only pick the ripest coffee cherries to consume.
Historians and political scientists who specialize in the region look at what has become the ripest plum for big powers since the breakup of the Soviet Union, and especially since the US got a justification for flexing its muscle there.
The girls raced up the hill to the tree, climbed the brittle branches, and picked the ripest jobos.
But now it is the service sector that could be ripest for technology-generated growth.
These are lusciously dark purple, almost black, at their ripest.
Rosenberg says this plague is also perfectly predictable because "we know how quickly the motor vehicle manufacturers are planning to increase their production in these ripest of markets.
The cats eat the ripest coffee berries, the fruit of which breaks down in their digestive tracts before they expel the beans.
He said he sees the Dominican Republic as the Caribbean nation with the greatest economic strength and ripest investment climate.
Only the very ripest will require a refrigerator and will be difficult to get home unbruised.
Red, ripe flesh is the best indicator of the sweetest and most nutritious watermelon, though it's hard to choose the ripest melon when it's uncut.
Wevers has given us the ripest fruit of his unequaled scholarship.