tendril

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tendril

a modified plant structure used for attachment to a support. Clematis has tendrils which are modified PETIOLES (leaf stalks), the vine uses a modified stem, and in some species of pea (e.g. Lathyrus aphaca) the whole leaf is specialized to form a tendril, with normal leaf functions performed by greatly enlarged STIPULES.
References in classic literature ?
She walked under one of the fairy-like gray arches between the trees and looked up at the sprays and tendrils which formed them.
The tendrils of the peas hung down over the boxes; and the rose-trees shot up long branches, twined round the windows, and then bent towards each other: it was almost like a triumphant arch of foliage and flowers.
At first, she read to please her humble friend; but soon her own earnest nature threw out its tendrils, and wound itself around the majestic book; and Eva loved it, because it woke in her strange yearnings, and strong, dim emotions, such as impassioned, imaginative children love to feel.
But instead of the darkness, and the thick and mephitic atmosphere he had expected to find, Dantes saw a dim and bluish light, which, as well as the air, entered, not merely by the aperture he had just formed, but by the interstices and crevices of the rock which were visible from without, and through which he could distinguish the blue sky and the waving branches of the evergreen oaks, and the tendrils of the creepers that grew from the rocks.
There they were--the sweet face and neck, with the dark tendrils of hair, the long dark lashes, the rounded cheek and the pouting lips--pale and thin, yes, but like Hetty, and only Hetty.
The tender shoots and the expanding flowers are nipped and withered, and of a vine that yearned to stretch its tendrils round the world there is left but a sapless stump.
As Tarzan leaped for the vines he realized that the lion was close upon him and that his life depended upon the strength of the creepers clinging to the city walls; but to his intense relief he found the stems as large around as a man's arm, and the tendrils which had fastened themselves to the wall so firmly fixed, that his weight upon the stem appeared to have no appreciable effect upon them.
Then look out for woodchucks, if it is an exposed place, for they will nibble off the earliest tender leaves almost clean as they go; and again, when the young tendrils make their appearance, they have notice of it, and will shear them off with both buds and young pods, sitting erect like a squirrel.
His stomach, less resigned than he was, rebelled, and he was obliged to fasten a tendril of wild-vine tightly about his waist.
as though the toes were shooting forth a tendril which might hope in time to entwine itself around his massive leg.
Even if a surgeon removes most of the tumor, it's nearly impossible to get the invasive, cancerous tendrils that spread deeper into the brain and inevitably the remnants grow back.
The total number of tendrils harvested from males during the first (2009) and second (2010) planting seasons were 261.