noun Botany.
a rootlike subterranean stem, commonly horizontal in position, that usually produces roots below and sends up shoots progressively from the upper surface.

1835–45; < Neo-Latin rhizoma < Greek rhízōma root, stem, noun of result from rhizoûn to fix firmly, take root, derivative of rhíza root1

rhizomatous [rahy-zom-uh-tuhs, -zoh-muh-] , adjective
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World English Dictionary
rhizome (ˈraɪzəʊm)
rootstock, Also called: rootstalk a thick horizontal underground stem of plants such as the mint and iris whose buds develop new roots and shoots
[C19: from New Latin rhizoma, from Greek, from rhiza a root]

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Word Origin & History

1845, from Gk. rhizoma "mass of tree roots," from rhizoun "cause to strike root," from rhiza "root," probably from PIE *wrad- "branch, root" (cf. L. radix "root," O.N. rot "root," O.E. wyrt "plant, herb;" see radish).
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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American Heritage
Science Dictionary
rhizome  [%PREMIUM_LINK%]     (rī'zōm')  Pronunciation Key 

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A plant stem that grows horizontally under or along the ground and often sends out roots and shoots. New plants develop from the shoots. Ginger, iris, and violets have rhizomes. Also called rootstock. Compare bulb, corm, runner, tuber.

The American Heritage® Science Dictionary
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Example sentences
With a knife, cut the parent rhizome into segments so each has its own leaf fan.
Powdered rhizome has been considered particularly effective against parasitic worms.
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