5 common French expressions with fruits and vegetables

Lots of French expressions and idioms contain names of fruits and vegetables. Here is a selection of the most common ones. As usual on French Together, these are real daily-life expressions that you can use to sound more natural.

Tomber dans les pommes

Je me sens mal, j’espère que je ne vais pas tomber dans les pommes.

Can you guess what “to fall into the apples” mean? No? When someone “tombe dans les pommes”, it means the person fainted. You can also use the verb “s’évanouir” (to faint) if you don’t like apples.

Je me sens mal, j’espère que je ne vais pas tomber dans les pommes.
I feel bad, I hope I won’t faint.

Raconter des salades

A salad is a mixtures of vegetables, fruits and other ingredients. So is a lie, you mix lots of events and stories to make the whole things sound believable.

When someone “tells salads”, it means the person is telling bullshit or lying about something.This is the counterpart of “to be spinning a yarn”.

Arrête de raconter des salades, t’es pas crédible !

Stop telling lies, you aren’t believable.

C’est un navet

French people hate turnips, or at least, it’s what you could think since that’s how they call bad movies. When you find a movie really horrible, you say “c’est un navet” (it’s a turnip).

C’était vraiment un navet ce film.
This movie was really bad/ was a real turkey/dud.

 Avoir la pêche/la banane/la patate

Someone who has the peach, the banana or the potato is someone who is very dynamic and in a good mood. To make it easier to remember, think about the smile shape of bananas.

Elle a vraiment la pêche aujourd’hui.

She is really full of energy today.

Ramener sa fraise

You know this person who always joins discussions without being invited and always gives his/her opinion without being asked to? In French we say that this person “ramène sa fraise” (lit : brings its strawberry).

Image credit: kurhan / 123RF Stock Photo

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Benjamin Houy

Benjamin Houy is a native French speaker and tea drinker with a BA degree in Applied Foreign Languages and a passion for languages. After teaching French and English in South Korea for 7 months as part of a French government program, he created French Together™ to help English speakers learn conversational French.