A bud that occurs at the end of a stem. Although it is usually a vegetative bud that will continue the growth of the stem the following year, it can also be a floral bud that will flower the following year. Some trees do not have a true terminal bud ( Tree of Heaven is a good example), in which case the uppermost lateral bud serves its purpose.
The terminal bud is a bud located at the apex (tip) of the stem. This type of bud is the dominant bud, since it can cause all the lateral (side) buds below them to remain dormant at all times of the year. Terminal buds have special tissue, called apical meristem, cells that can divide indefinitely.