A plant of the rose family, typically having serrated, divided leaves and seeds bearing small hooks. Several kinds are grown in gardens.
Genus Geum, family Rosaceae: several species, including the widespread water avens (G. rivale), with drooping pinkish flowers, and the mat-forming alpine avens (G. montanum)‘Along with a heavy ground cover of soft mosses are horsetails and such wildflowers as Ross's avens, bluebells, sweet coltsfoot, a grass-of-Parnassus, a fleabane, and various sedges.’
- ‘Among the wildflowers are a red columbine, aster, figwort, wild sarsaparilla, fleabane, and avens.’
- ‘In a study on Devon Island, just south of Ellesmere, the hares fed mainly on Arctic willow in winter, supplemented in summer with Arctic avens, grasses and sedges.’
- ‘The line feeds into dead-end lane, with verges pink with nodding water avens, and finally, another batch of buttercup meadows where every golden head faced west to the sinking sun.’
Middle English from Old French avence (medieval Latin avencia), of unknown origin.