heirloom (plural heirlooms)
- A valued possession that has been passed down through the generations.
- A crop variety that has been passed down through generations of farmers by seed saving and cultivation.
2009 August 19, Melissa Clark, “Plums Rescue a Seasonal Favorite”, in New York Times:
- My last trip to the market barely yielded enough unmealy heirlooms for a couple of salads.
2014 September 26, Charles Quest-Ritson, “The Dutch garden where tulip bulbs live forever: Hortus Bulborum, a volunteer-run Dutch garden, is dedicated to conserving historic varieties before they vanish for good [print version: Inspired by a living bulb archive, 27 September 2014, p. G5]”, in The Daily Telegraph (Gardening):
- At Hortus Bulborum you will find heirloom narcissi that date back at least to the 15th century and famous old tulips like 'Duc van Tol' (1595) and its sports.
valued possession passed down through the generations
crop variety that has been passed down through generations