American English

Definition of prune verb from the Oxford Advanced American Dictionary



    Verb Forms present simple I / you / we / they prune
    he / she / it prunes
    past simple pruned
    -ing form pruning
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  1. 1to cut off some of the branches from a tree, bush, etc. so that it will grow better and stronger prune something When should you prune apple trees? He pruned the longer branches off the tree. prune something back The hedge needs pruning back.
  2. 2prune something (back) to make something smaller by removing parts; to cut out parts of something Staff numbers have been pruned back to 175. The railroad companies have pruned their schedules (= there are fewer trains). Prune out any unnecessary details.
    noun [uncountable] All roses require annual pruning. The company would benefit from a little pruning here and there.
See the Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary entry: prune

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