English Idioms – Spring Edition

Because the snow is melting, the flowers are starting to blossom and spring is in the air, here are six idioms with a spring and flower theme.

cherry blossoms 3You’re no spring chicken!

Be no spring chicken – This idiom means to no longer be young. This expression is often used to remind an older person that they need to save their energy.

Example: spring chicken
Daughter: What do you want to do for your 85th birthday, Grandpa?

Grandpa: I want to go skydiving!

Daughter: Really?! You know, I don’t think that is such a great idea. You are no spring chicken anymore.


 

We have spring fever!

Have spring fever – This means to be restless or excited by the beginning of spring. Finally you can go outside without a jacket and all the winter clothing, so you feel eager to get out and do things.

feverExample:
Teacher: What is wrong today? Why can’t any of you sit still for class?

Students: We have spring fever! Can we go outside and play?

 


Being rich is no bed of roses!

Be no bed of roses – This means that it is not as luxurious or easy as it might seem.

rosesExample:
Girl: Wow, your family has such a big mansion. You must have had every toy in the world when you were a child!

Boy: Yeah, but growing up rich is no bed of roses either! I almost never saw my parents when I was a kid.


 

garden pathDon’t lead me up the garden path!

Lead someone up/down the garden path – This means to give someone false information or try to distract someone so that they waste their time. Imagine that you are asking for directions, but the person instead directs you through the garden, down a long indirect road. This person is wasting your time!


Example: 

When the FBI showed up to ask questions about her files, she tried to lead them down the garden path by giving them a laptop that didn’t belong to her.

 


You need to nip it in the bud!

Nip it in the bud – This image is about cutting down a flower at the bud. The idiom means to stop something early or prevent it from growing any bigger.

Example: lap dog
Man: My puppy keeps chewing on everything!

Dog trainer: Uh oh. We need to nip that bad behavior in the bud. If he does that when he is a full-grown dog, he could really do some damage!

 


 

I’ll be pushing up daisies before this is ever finished!

daisyBe pushing up daisies – This idiom sounds nice, but actually refers to being dead and buried underground. From there, you will be under the flowers “pushing them up”. This can be used to emphasize that something is taking too long or is very hard to finish.

It is an indirect way to say someone has died, but be careful! It is almost never used to talk about an actual person who is dead, unless you really disliked that person.

Example:
Man: Ugh, I hate waiting in line. This is going to take hours.

Woman: I know! We’ll both be pushing up daisies before this is through.


 

Questions? Comments? Let me know from the Comments Form on the side, or take a class with me to learn more English idioms!