Cross x Mate

Hi every one

I have this doubt:
When talking about animals performing sex we say: the two animals mated.

But what about when we talk about plants or even human cells?
Should I say: the scientist "mated" or "crossed" the cells / plants?

Thank you!
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Mating - The pairing of male and female for the purpose of reproduction.
3. a method of hybridization or the hybrid so produced.

Origin: f. Croix, L. Crux breed animals or plants using parents of different races and varieties; cross a horse and a donkey; Mendel tried crossbreeding; these species do not interbreed.An organism that is the offspring of genetically dissimilar parents or stock; especially offspring produced by breeding plants or animals of different varieties or breeds or species; a mule is a cross between a horse and a donkey.

Mating have a "copulation" ring to it. In any case it has to do reproduction, more often than not meaning a pairing of two individuals of the same breed.

Different of crossing, that is more associated with a pairing of different ones, one example is the one above, between
a horse and a donkey, of wich results a mule.

I would say that in a crossing, the separate classes matter (an hybridization). Whereas in a pairing wether the classes of animals (or vegetables etc) are equal or different doesn´t matter at all. ... 71905.html
Traditionally, gender is important when a person talks about the product of a horse and donkey. The mule is a product of a mare (a female horse) to a jack (a horse for the mother and a donkey for the sire.) A hinny is the product of a stallion (male horse) to a jenny (a female donkey.) While some people refer to all horse and donkey crosses as mules, a mule and a hinny are two different creatures.