When you patch something, you repair it, like when you patch a hole in the knee of your favorite jeans or when road crews use asphalt to patch a pothole in the street.

The verb patch describes fixing by filling in a weak spot or by replacing missing material. You might patch a wall, for example, to fill in a hole before you paint it, or even “patch things up” after a disagreement with a friend. As a noun, patch describes a period of time, like a "rough path," the material used for fixing, like the patch you sew over a hole in fabric, or even a small piece of land, like a garden patch.

Definitions of patch
  1. noun
    a small contrasting part of something
    “a patch of clouds”
    patches of thin ice”
    synonyms: dapple, fleck, maculation, speckle, spot
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    pinpoint, speck
    a very small spot
    (pathology) a faint cloudy spot on the cornea
    a patch of bright color
    fret, worn spot
    a spot that has been worn away by abrasion or erosion
    (pathology) a small abnormal patch on or inside the body
    macula, macule
    a patch of skin that is discolored but not usually elevated; caused by various diseases
    mock sun, parhelion, sundog
    a bright spot on the parhelic circle; caused by diffraction by ice crystals
    macula, sunspot
    a cooler darker spot appearing periodically on the sun's photosphere; associated with a strong magnetic field
    a large bright spot on the sun's photosphere occurring most frequently in the vicinity of sunspots
    a bright spot on a planet
    amyloid plaque, amyloid protein plaque
    a plaque consisting of tangles of amyloid protein in nervous tissue (a pathological mark of Alzheimer's disease)
    arterial plaque
    a fatty deposit inside an arterial wall; characteristic of atherosclerosis
    bacterial plaque, dental plaque
    a film of mucus and bacteria deposited on the teeth that encourages the development of dental caries
    freckle, lentigo
    a small brownish spot (of the pigment melanin) on the skin
    liver spot
    a type of skin disease that causes brown spots on the skin
    plague spot
    a spot on the skin characteristic of the plague
    type of:
    a pattern of marks
  2. noun
    a piece of cloth used as decoration or to mend or cover a hole
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    a bright patch of color used for decoration or identification
    (usually used in the plural) one of a pair of adhesive patches worn to cover the nipples of exotic dancers and striptease performers
    shoulder patch
    patch worn on the shoulder of a military uniform to indicate rank
    type of:
    piece of cloth, piece of material
    a separate part consisting of fabric
  3. noun
    sewing that repairs a worn or torn hole (especially in a garment)
    synonyms: darn, mend
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    type of:
    sewing, stitchery
    needlework on which you are working with needle and thread
  4. noun
    a piece of soft material that covers and protects an injured part of the body
    synonyms: bandage
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    adhesive bandage
    bandage consisting of a medical dressing of plain absorbent gauze held in place by a plastic or fabric tape coated with adhesive
    capeline bandage
    bandage that covers the head or an amputation stump like a cap
    cast, plaster bandage, plaster cast
    bandage consisting of a firm covering (often made of plaster of Paris) that immobilizes broken bones while they heal
    compression bandage, tourniquet
    bandage that stops the flow of blood from an artery by applying pressure
    elastic bandage
    a bandage containing stretchable material that can apply local pressure
    four-tailed bandage
    a bandage consisting of a strip of cloth split in two on both ends; the central part is placed under the chin to restrict motion of the mandible and the tails are tied over the top of the head
    immovable bandage
    a bandage of cloth impregnated with a substance (e.g., plaster of Paris) that hardens soon after it is applied
    oblique bandage
    a bandage in which successive turns proceed obliquely up or down a limb
    roller bandage
    bandage consisting of a strip of sterile fabric (of variable width) rolled into a cylinder to facilitate application
    scarf bandage, sling, triangular bandage
    bandage to support an injured forearm; consisting of a wide triangular piece of cloth hanging from around the neck
    suspensory, suspensory bandage
    a bandage of elastic fabric applied to uplift a dependant part (as the scrotum or a pendulous breast)
    swathe, wrapping
    an enveloping bandage
    (medicine) a bandage consisting of a pad and belt; worn to hold a hernia in place by pressure
    Band Aid
    trade name for an adhesive bandage to cover small cuts or blisters
    an elastic adhesive bandage for covering cuts or wounds
    spiral bandage
    an oblique bandage in which successive turns overlap preceding turns
    type of:
    dressing, medical dressing
    a cloth covering for a wound or sore
  5. noun
    a protective cloth covering for an injured eye
    synonyms: eyepatch
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    type of:
    cloth covering
    a covering made of cloth
  6. noun
    a small area of ground covered by specific vegetation
    “a cabbage patch
    “a briar patch
    synonyms: plot, plot of ground, plot of land
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    a plot of ground in which plants are growing
    a plot of ground where plants are cultivated
    asparagus bed
    a bed in which asparagus is growing
    bed of flowers, flower bed, flowerbed
    a bed in which flowers are growing
    flower garden
    a garden featuring flowering plants
    formal garden
    a garden laid out on regular lines with plants arranged in symmetrical locations or in geometrical designs
    grove, orchard, plantation, woodlet
    garden consisting of a small cultivated wood without undergrowth
    herb garden
    a garden for growing herbs
    hop field, hop garden
    a garden where hops are grown
    a bed of earth covered with glass and heated by rotting manure to promote the growth of plants
    kitchen garden, vegetable garden, vegetable patch
    a small garden where vegetables are grown
    a garden laid out for esthetic effect
    market garden
    a garden where fruit and vegetables are grown for marketing
    pot farm
    a plot of ground where marijuana is grown and harvested (often hidden in a national forest)
    rock garden, rockery
    a garden featuring rocks; usually alpine plants
    roof garden
    a garden on a flat roof of a building
    rose garden
    a garden for growing roses
    a bed where seedlings are grown before transplanting
    sunken garden
    a garden set below the level of the ground surrounding it
    tea garden
    a public garden where tea is served
    a garden having shrubs clipped or trimmed into decorative shapes especially of animals
    turnip bed
    a bed in which turnips are growing
    type of:
    parcel, parcel of land, piece of ground, piece of land, tract
    an extended area of land
  7. verb
    provide with a patch; also used metaphorically
    “The field was patched with snow”
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    type of:
    furnish, provide, render, supply
    give something useful or necessary to
  8. verb
    mend by putting a patch on
    patch a hole”
    synonyms: patch up
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    type of:
    bushel, doctor, fix, furbish up, mend, repair, restore, touch on
    restore by replacing a part or putting together what is torn or broken
  9. verb
    repair by adding pieces
    synonyms: piece
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    type of:
    bushel, doctor, fix, furbish up, mend, repair, restore, touch on
    restore by replacing a part or putting together what is torn or broken
  10. noun
    a period of indeterminate length (usually short) marked by some action or condition
    “a patch of bad weather”
    synonyms: bout, piece, spell, while
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    cold snap, cold spell
    a spell of cold weather
    hot spell
    a spell of hot weather
    a spell of cold weather
    type of:
    an indefinite period (usually marked by specific attributes or activities)
  11. noun
    a connection intended to be used for a limited time
    synonyms: temporary hookup
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    type of:
    connecter, connection, connective, connector, connexion
    an instrumentality that connects
    contrivance, lash-up
    any improvised arrangement for temporary use
  12. verb
    to join or unite the pieces of
    patch the skirt”
    synonyms: piece
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    vamp, vamp up
    piece (something old) with a new part
    type of:
    conjoin, join
    make contact or come together
  13. noun
    a short set of commands to correct a bug in a computer program
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    type of:
    computer program, computer programme, program, programme
    (computer science) a sequence of instructions that a computer can interpret and execute
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