Use the word "grain" when talking about the small seeds that are harvested from plants for food. Grain can come from wheat, corn, barley, rye, etcetera.

  • I prefer whole grain bread to processed white bread.
  • Most of the grain harvested in this area consists of corn.
  • Whole grain cereal is a good source of fiber for your diet.
  • Grain prices in the midwest are starting to come down due to an over supply of corn. (The laws of supply and demand are in effect.)
  • The excess grain that is harvested is stored in a grain silo.

wheat grain Grain comes from seeds.

We also use "grain" when describing a very small amount of something:

  • There are a few grains of sand in my shoe.
  • Some grains of rice fell on the floor.
  • I always take what he has to say with a grain of salt. (This is an expression. It’s said when a person is suspicious of statements made by another.)
  • There’s not a single grain of truth in that statement.

The word "grain" is also useful when describing the patterns found in a tree that has been cut. The wood or lumber that is produced has a grain that might be desirable for making furniture or other objects.

  • Oak is valuable because it has an attractive grain.
  • Maple has a distinctive grain.
  • The grain in pine wood comes out when it is stained.
  • Cutting against the grain reveals the age of a tree.


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April 7, 2015