word-forming element meaning "plant, plant characteristic; planting, growth; abnormal growth," from Greek phyton "plant," literally "that which has grown," from phyein "to bring forth, make grow," from PIE root *bheue- "to be, exist, grow."
It is the hypothetical source of/evidence for its existence is provided by: Greek aerein "to lift, raise up;" Lithuanian svarus "heavy," sverti "to lift, weigh;" Old English swar, Old Norse svarr, Old High German swar, German schwer "heavy."
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<a href="https://www.etymonline.com/word/aerophyte">Etymology of aerophyte by etymonline</a>
Harper, D. (n.d.). Etymology of aerophyte. Online Etymology Dictionary. Retrieved $(datetime), from https://www.etymonline.com/word/aerophyte