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Morphology of root and its types

Introduction:

  • Plant morphology: (morphe-form, logos-study)
  • It is the branch of botany that deals with the study of external structure of the plant like roots, stems, leaves, flowers, fruits, seeds etc. and their modifications.
  • It includes the shape, size, structure, arrangement and orientation of the various plant parts.
  • Morphology plays an important role in the classification of angiosperms.
  • The body of a flowering plant can be divided into two fundamental parts :
    i) Root system- Which comprises the roots and its branches.
    ii) Shoot system- Which comprises stem, leaves, buds, flowers and fruits.

Detailed Explanation:

The root is usually an underground part of the plant.

A. Characteristic features of the root-

1. Generally underground, descending portion of the plant axis and non-green part of the plant.
2. It lacks nodes, internodes and buds.
3. Positively Geotropic- grows downward into the soil in the direction of gravity.
4. Negatively Phototropic- grows against the direction of light.
5. Positively Hydrotropic- grows towards water.
6. Endogenous Origin- Lateral branches arise from the pericycle.
7. Functions- It provides anchorage to the plants, stores reserve food, absorbs water and minerals from the soil and also synthesizes plant growth regulators.

B. On the basis of origin the roots can be classified into the following types:

1. Tap root: (Example: Dicots- Mustard)

  • Thick primary root arises directly from the radicle and grows inside the soil.
  • It bears lateral roots of several orders that are referred to as secondary, tertiary roots etc.
  • The primary roots and its branches constitute the tap root system.
  • Tap root is deep penetrating.
     

tap-root-system


2. Fibrous root: (Example: Monocots- Wheat)

  • The primary root is short-lived and is generally replaced by several fine fibrous roots.
  • These roots originate from the base of the stem.
  • Fibrous roots are not deep penetrating hence often called surface feeders.
     

fibrous-root-system


3. Adventitious root: (Example: Grass, Monstera, Banyan tree)

  • Some plants have specialized roots called adventitious roots.
  • Adventitious means different in origin.
  • These roots develop from any parts of the plant other than the radicle.

prop-roots-of-banyan-tree

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