27 Idioms for Trees + Quiz


Just like the branches of a mighty oak, our language is intertwined with expressions that draw inspiration from the natural world.

In this listicle, we’ll delve into the meaning of each idiom, providing you with a sentence to showcase its practical use. So, let’s branch out and explore the rich tapestry of tree-related idioms!

idioms for trees

What is an idiom for trees?

Idioms are phrases or expressions that convey a figurative meaning, often unrelated to the literal words used.

When it comes to trees, our language has sprouted a variety of idioms that add a touch of nature to our everyday conversations.


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Created by Dr. Julia Rossi

English Language Level Placement Test – (TEFL)

Take this quiz and find out how good your English is. Pass and receive an “English Language Level Placement” certificate.

1 / 20

What is a simile?

2 / 20

Identify the simile in the following sentence: “She swims like a fish.”

3 / 20

What is a metaphor?

4 / 20

Which of the following is a metaphor?

5 / 20

What is an idiom?

6 / 20

What does the idiom “break the ice” mean?

7 / 20

What is an adjective?

8 / 20

Choose the adjective in the following sentence: “The quick brown fox jumps over the lazy dog.”

9 / 20

What is an abbreviation?

10 / 20

What does the abbreviation “e.g.” stand for?

11 / 20

What is a verb?

12 / 20

Identify the verb in the following sentence: “The cat sleeps on the sofa.”

13 / 20

“Out of the frying pan into the fire” is an example of:

14 / 20

Which of the following is an adjective?

15 / 20

The abbreviation “NASA” stands for:

16 / 20

Choose the metaphor in the following sentence: “Time is a thief.”

17 / 20

What does the idiom “hit the books” mean?

18 / 20

Which of the following sentences contains a simile?

19 / 20

“LOL” is an abbreviation for:

20 / 20

Identify the verb in this sentence: “They whispered secrets into the night.”

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IdiomMeaningSentence
Bark up the wrong treePursuing a mistaken course of actionSarah accused Alex of taking her snacks, but she was barking up the wrong tree; her brother was the real culprit.
Can’t see the forest for the treesUnable to see the larger picture due to a focus on detailsMary gets so caught up in math problems that she can’t see the forest for the trees.
Money doesn’t grow on treesResources are limited; one must be mindful of spendingDad reminded Tim that money doesn’t grow on trees when he asked for a new video game every week.
Out on a limbIn a risky or vulnerable situationTaking the internship without a backup plan left Sarah feeling out on a limb career-wise.
Tree huggerPassionate about environmental conservationEmma is a proud tree hugger; she spends weekends planting saplings in the community park.
Leaf it at thatStop discussing or probing a topicAfter the heated argument, Mark decided to leaf it at that and not bring up the issue again.
Family treeVisual representation of a family’s ancestryDuring the family reunion, Grandma showed us the extensive branches on our family tree.
As sure as God made little green applesAbsolutely certainJane was as sure as God made little green apples that she would ace the exam after hours of studying.
Shake like a leafTrembling due to fear or nervousnessBefore her speech, Emily couldn’t help but shake like a leaf in front of the entire school.
Root of the problemUnderlying cause of an issueAddressing the lack of communication was the key to solving the root of the problem in their relationship.
Turn over a new leafMake a fresh start or change for the betterAfter the messy breakup, Alex decided to turn over a new leaf and focus on self-improvement.
From acorns, mighty oaks growSmall things can develop into significant achievementsTom started his small bakery with just one oven, believing that from acorns, mighty oaks grow.
The apple doesn’t fall far from the treeChildren resemble or inherit characteristics from their parentsWith his passion for music, it’s clear that the apple doesn’t fall far from the tree in the Johnson family.
Like a tree in a forestUnnoticed or inconspicuousWorking diligently in the background, Susan felt like a tree in a forest during the company’s success celebration.
A tree is known by its fruitJudging someone or something by their actions or resultsIn leadership, a tree is known by its fruit; successful leaders yield positive outcomes.
Touch woodExpressing a hope for good luck or to ward off jinxFingers crossed, touch wood, Mark wished for smooth sailing during his exams.
A chip off the old blockA person closely resembling or inheriting qualities from parentsSarah’s son, with his artistic talent, is indeed a chip off the old block.
If the sky falls, we shall catch larksPreparing for unlikely or extreme situationsWhile some found her precautions excessive, Susan believed in being prepared for anything, even if the sky falls, we shall catch larks.
As the twig is bent, so grows the treeEarly influences shape a person’s characterThe mentor emphasized the importance of positive influences, stating that as the twig is bent, so grows the tree.
Like a fish out of waterUncomfortable or out of place in a particular situationBeing the only non-athlete in the sports club, Jenny felt like a fish out of water.
In the shadeIn a position of relative obscurity or inferiorityDespite his talent, John remained in the shade of his more outgoing colleagues at work.
Pine awaySuffering a gradual decline or wasting awayLisa watched the neglected garden pine away until she decided to revive it.
Don’t count your chickens before they hatchAnticipate success or profit only when certainSarah reminded her friends not to count their chickens before they hatch regarding their upcoming project.
Forest for the firewoodMissing the bigger picture for the sake of immediate concernsFocusing on the minor details, Mark failed to see the forest for the firewood in the business proposal.
Know which way the wind is blowingBeing aware of current trends or prevailing opinionsSuccessful entrepreneurs always know which way the wind is blowing, adapting their strategies accordingly.
As straight as an arrowCompletely honest or morally uprightDespite the temptation to exaggerate, Jake remained as straight as an arrow in his recount of the events.
The acorn doesn’t fall far from the oakTraits or characteristics are often inherited or shared within a familyWith a knack for storytelling, it’s evident that the acorn doesn’t fall far from the oak in the Thompson family.

Metaphors can depict trees in unique ways, like comparing them to wise elders standing tall and rooted in the earth. To explore more metaphors for trees, you can visit this link: Metaphors for Trees. Similarly, similes offer comparisons that help us understand trees better, such as saying they are as sturdy as a fortress wall. Discover additional similes for trees here: Similes for Trees.

Idioms for Trees

1. Bark up the wrong tree

Meaning: To pursue a mistaken or misguided course of action.

In a Sentence: Sarah was barking up the wrong tree when she accused Alex of taking her snacks; it turned out her brother was the real culprit.

2. Can’t see the forest for the trees

Meaning: Unable to see the larger picture due to a focus on small details.

In a Sentence: Mary often gets so caught up in individual math problems that she can’t see the forest for the trees.

3. Money doesn’t grow on trees

Meaning: Resources are limited; one must be mindful of spending.

In a Sentence: Dad reminded Tim that money doesn’t grow on trees when he asked for a new video game every week.

4. Out on a limb

Meaning: In a risky or vulnerable situation.

In a Sentence: Taking the internship without a backup plan left Sarah feeling out on a limb career-wise.

5. Tree hugger

Meaning: Someone who is passionate about environmental conservation.

In a Sentence: Emma is a proud tree hugger; she spends weekends planting saplings in the community park.

6. Leaf it at that

Meaning: To stop discussing or probing a topic.

In a Sentence: After the heated argument, Mark decided to leaf it at that and not bring up the issue again.

7. Family tree

Meaning: A visual representation of a family’s ancestry.

In a Sentence: During the family reunion, Grandma showed us the extensive branches on our family tree.

8. As sure as God made little green apples

Meaning: Absolutely certain.

In a Sentence: Jane was as sure as God made little green apples that she would ace the exam after hours of studying.

9. Shake like a leaf

Meaning: Trembling or shaking due to fear or nervousness.

In a Sentence: Before her speech, Emily couldn’t help but shake like a leaf in front of the entire school.

10. Root of the problem

Meaning: The underlying cause of an issue.

In a Sentence: Addressing the lack of communication was the key to solving the root of the problem in their relationship.

11. Turn over a new leaf

Meaning: To make a fresh start or change for the better.

In a Sentence: After the messy breakup, Alex decided to turn over a new leaf and focus on self-improvement.

12. From acorns, mighty oaks grow

Meaning: Small things can develop into significant achievements over time.

In a Sentence: Tom started his small bakery with just one oven, believing that from acorns, mighty oaks grow.

13. The apple doesn’t fall far from the tree

Meaning: Children often resemble or inherit characteristics from their parents.

In a Sentence: With his passion for music, it’s clear that the apple doesn’t fall far from the tree in the Johnson family.

14. Like a tree in a forest

Meaning: Unnoticed or inconspicuous.

In a Sentence: Working diligently in the background, Susan felt like a tree in a forest during the company’s success celebration.

15. A tree is known by its fruit

Meaning: Judging someone or something by their actions or results.

In a Sentence: In leadership, a tree is known by its fruit; successful leaders yield positive outcomes.

16. Touch wood

Meaning: Expressing a hope for good luck or to ward off jinx.

In a Sentence: Fingers crossed, touch wood, Mark wished for smooth sailing during his exams.

17. A chip off the old block

Meaning: A person who closely resembles or inherits qualities from their parents.

In a Sentence: Sarah’s son, with his artistic talent, is indeed a chip off the old block.

18. If the sky falls, we shall catch larks

Meaning: Preparing for unlikely or extreme situations.

In a Sentence: While some found her precautions excessive, Susan believed in being prepared for anything, even if the sky falls, we shall catch larks.

19. As the twig is bent, so grows the tree

Meaning: Early influences shape a person’s character.

In a Sentence: The mentor emphasized the importance of positive influences, stating that as the twig is bent, so grows the tree.

20. Like a fish out of water

Meaning: Uncomfortable or out of place in a particular situation.

In a Sentence: Being the only non-athlete in the sports club, Jenny felt like a fish out of water.

21. In the shade

Meaning: In a position of relative obscurity or inferiority.

In a Sentence: Despite his talent, John remained in the shade of his more outgoing colleagues at work.

22. Pine away

Meaning: To suffer a gradual decline or waste away.

In a Sentence: Lisa watched the neglected garden pine away until she decided to revive it.

23. Don’t count your chickens before they hatch

Meaning: Don’t anticipate success or profit until it is certain.

In a Sentence: Sarah reminded her friends not to count their chickens before they hatch regarding their upcoming project.

24. Forest for the firewood

Meaning: Missing the bigger picture for the sake of immediate concerns.

In a Sentence: Focusing on the minor details, Mark failed to see the forest for the firewood in the business proposal.

25. Know which way the wind is blowing

Meaning: Being aware of the current trends or prevailing opinions.

In a Sentence: Successful entrepreneurs always know which way the wind is blowing, adapting their strategies accordingly.

26. As straight as an arrow

Meaning: Completely honest or morally upright.

In a Sentence: Despite the temptation to exaggerate, Jake remained as straight as an arrow in his recount of the events.

27. The acorn doesn’t fall far from the oak

Meaning: Traits or characteristics are often inherited or shared within a family.

In a Sentence: With a knack for storytelling, it’s evident that the acorn doesn’t fall far from the oak in the Thompson family.

10 Quizzes About The Idiom in The Article

Quiz 1: Bark Up the Wrong Tree

  1. What does the idiom “Bark up the wrong tree” mean?
  • a) Following the right path
  • b) Pursuing a mistaken course of action
  • c) Climbing a tree
  1. In the article, Sarah accused Alex of taking her snacks. What was the result?
  • a) Sarah found her snacks.
  • b) Sarah apologized.
  • c) Sarah was barking up the wrong tree; her brother was the real culprit.

Quiz 2: Can’t See the Forest for the Trees

  1. What does the idiom “Can’t see the forest for the trees” imply?
  • a) Having a clear vision
  • b) Focusing on small details and missing the larger picture
  • c) Being lost in the woods
  1. Give an example of someone who can’t see the forest for the trees from the article.
  • a) John during the family reunion
  • b) Mary in math problems
  • c) Alex in the argument

Quiz 3: Money Doesn’t Grow on Trees

  1. What does the expression “Money doesn’t grow on trees” mean?
  • a) Money is abundant
  • b) Resources are limited; one must be mindful of spending
  • c) Trees produce money
  1. Why did Tim’s dad remind him of the saying in the article?
  • a) Tim asked for a new video game.
  • b) Tim found money on a tree.
  • c) Tim needed financial advice.

Quiz 4: Out on a Limb

  1. What situation does the idiom “Out on a limb” describe?
  • a) Being in a comfortable position
  • b) In a risky or vulnerable situation
  • c) Climbing a tree for fun
  1. How did Sarah feel in the article after taking the internship without a backup plan?
  • a) Confident
  • b) Out on a limb career-wise
  • c) Safe and secure

Quiz 5: Tree Hugger

  1. What is a “tree hugger” according to the article?
  • a) Someone afraid of trees
  • b) Someone passionate about environmental conservation
  • c) A tree-climbing enthusiast
  1. What does Emma spend her weekends doing in the article?
    • a) Watching TV
    • b) Planting saplings in the community park
    • c) Avoiding nature

Feel free to use these questions for a fun quiz or test your knowledge about idioms related to trees!

Conclusion

And there you have it – a stroll through the idyllic groves of idioms for trees. Just as trees stand tall, these expressions add depth and color to our language.

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