arbusto spontaneo


Senior Member
🇬🇧 English (England)
Hi all,
Le bacche di Goji sono i frutti di un arbusto spontaneo di origine tibetana, il Lycium barbarum.
My dictionary gives me two translations for spontaneo in a botanical sense, but I’ve never heard either of them before. Which should I be using? Apparently either "volunteer" (OED: not deliberately planted), or "spontaneous" (growing naturally without being tended/cultivated). The OED has "spontaneous" as being archaic, so I guess it'd be "volunteer", but the fact that they're both listed in the dictionary gives me pause for thought.

Penny for 'em?

  • Mary49

    Senior Member
    Hi Mark,
    since "spontaneo" in case of plants means "growing naturally without human intervention", I would use "spontaneous" or, why not?, "wild".


    Senior Member
    🇬🇧 English (England)
    Oh right, "wild". That's not a bad idea. :) On the other hand, I think it might be better to keep it more technical sounding: this is the description on the back of a seed packet, for growing.


    Senior Member
    English, England
    'Spontaneous' is not archaic in this context. 'Spontaneous vegetation' has over 400,000 Google hits.
    I prefer 'wild', though.

    Edit: Actually, if it's on the back of a seed packet, wouldn't 'spontaneous' be better?
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