1538, from M.Fr. tendrillon "bud, shoot, cartilage," perhaps a dim. of tendron "cartilage," from O.Fr. tendre "soft" (see tender (adj.)), or else from L. tendere "to stretch, extend" (see tender (v.)).
(těn'drəl) A slender, coiling plant part, often a modified leaf or leaf part, that helps support the stem of some climbing angiosperms by clinging to or winding around an object. Peas, squash, and grapes produce tendrils.