Root System

Last updated: February 28, 2019

What Does Root System Mean?

Plant roots are classified into three different systems to make their study easier. There are three main classifications of plant root systems: tap roots, fibrous roots, and adventitious roots.

No matter what type of root system a plant has, it is the root system of a plant that ensures all parts of the plant receive the required water and minerals to grow. A root is the most basic and fundamental organ of a plant. It is through the roots that plants grow out of the soil.

The roots originate from the seed and everything else originates from the root. The roots perform most of the important functions of a plant.


Maximum Yield Explains Root System

Plants are generally categorized into three main root systems: tap roots, fibrous roots, and adventitious roots. Tap roots grow vertically downward and are usually deep-rooted. The primary root becomes the dominant root of the plant and secondary and tertiary roots develop from it. This system is found in dicotyledon plants like beans, mangoes, and almonds.

Fibrous roots, on the other hand, have no single dominant root. All roots are thin and more or less equal in length. Rather than growing straight down, fibrous root systems grow every which way, creating a larger root zone and mass than tap root systems. Most fibrous root systems are not deep rooted. This system is found in monocotyledon plants like bananas and onions.

Adventitious roots are a bit strange. These roots do not arise from the bottom or a primary root but instead grow out from other organs of the plant. Most of them originate from a stem and in a few cases, even leaves produce adventitious roots. This helps in advanced vegetative propagation in plants like ferns, mosses, and horsetails.

The term root system is a simple term referring to which type of root system a plant has. It is another way to classify plants and group plants of a similar growth style together. The term should not be confused with root zone (which refers to the roots and their immediate surrounding areas), or root mass (a mass of roots, regardless of its system type).


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