Gardening Tips

types of roots

types of roots

We all have some idea of ​​what the roots of plants are: that lower part that is usually kept underground and through which the plant obtains water and nutrients. However, correctly defining and classifying roots according to botany requires a bit more work.

If you want to learn more about this part of the plants and their types, join us in this practical article from EcologíaVerde in which you will see the types of rootsas well as its characteristics and photos of some relevant ones.

What are roots – simple definition

The roots They are the first organ that the plant develops when germinating. They grow by spreading and branching, usually underground, to cover as much ground as possible and thus increase the capacity of absorption of water and nutrients of the plant, which they carry out by means of absorbent “hairs”. These nutrients are then transported to the rest of the plant.

The roots also have the function of anchor the plant to the ground In most cases, although there are plants with aerial roots and they fulfill other functions, as in the case of some orchids, which can carry out photosynthesis.

Types of roots: classification

There are several ways we can classify roots:

Types of roots according to their shape

  • Primary or axonomorphic roots
  • fasciculated roots
  • napiform roots
  • branching roots
  • tuberous roots

Types of roots according to the direction of growth

  • adventitious roots
  • aquatic roots
  • sucking roots
  • aerial roots
  • storage roots

Types of roots according to the anchor they give to the plant

  • contractile roots
  • Coarse roots or stilts
  • epiphytic roots

Primary or axonomorphic roots

Call primary root, fusiform, typical, pivoting or axonomorphic. It is characterized by being a type of root in which there is a main rootof much greater thickness and size, from which secondary roots of shorter length and thickness branch out.

Types of roots - Primary or axonomorphic roots
Image: Sites Google Natural Sciences

fasciculated roots

also called atypical or fibrous root. In this type of roots there is no main root, so all the branches are equally important and can reach similar sizes. It is one of the most commonly seen types of roots in landscaping plants.

Types of roots - fasciculated roots

napiform roots

The plant contains a big taproot, which has evolved to be able to store reserve nutrients and other vital substances. Therefore, they are very thick roots and, in addition, many of them are edible.

Types of roots - Napiform roots

branching roots

The structure of this root is very reminiscent of the branches of a tree. Does not have a main rootand it branches in a very marked way and that is why it is called branched root.

Root Types - Branching Roots

tuberous roots

The tuberous roots They also have the ability to expand and multiply their size by accumulating reserve substances, but instead of doing so in a single main root, they can do so in several deposits. They are usually called tubers.

Types of roots - Tuberous roots

adventitious roots

These are roots that are born and grow above ground, instead of below it. It stays in contact with the soil to be able to absorb nutrients and water from it, but it expands above it, without burying itself. They are subdivided into foliar, fibrous, and true adventitious.

Types of roots - Adventitious roots

aquatic roots

The aquatic roots are characteristic of the plants that grow in aquatic environments, as the name itself indicates. They are not in contact with the soil, and take the nutrients they need from the same water. They are usually plants that are not attached to anything and simply float on the surface.

Here you can learn +50 aquatic plants, their names and characteristics with images.

Types of roots - Aquatic roots

Sucking or parasitic roots

The parasitic plants they can develop roots that enter the branches or stems of the plants they parasitize, absorbing the nutrients they need from them. These are the calls sucking or parasitic roots and here you can meet various parasitic plants: characteristics, types and examples.

Types of roots - Sucking or parasitic roots

aerial roots

It’s another one of the types of parasitic plant roots it grows downwards and can lead to end up strangling the host plant. In this other post you can see more about air plants: types, names and care.

Root Types - Aerial Roots

storage roots

They fall into this group tubers and other roots that are capable of store water and nutrients underground, to keep them safe from herbivorous predators and to be able to take advantage of them when the plant needs them.

Types of Roots - Storage Roots

contractile roots

They are also a type of adventitious root. These are roots whose function is to move the shoot to a location close to the soil surface. The contractile roots they are long and fleshy, and when the plant grows it is partially consumed.

Root Types - Contractile Roots

Coarse roots or stilts

This type of root is known as coarse roots, stilt roots, or stilts. These start from the base of the trunk or stem before reaching the ground, and grow from there, extending until they enter the ground, even passing through water, so that a part of them remains visible. They usually have large treeswhich need greater stability due to the environment in which they develop.

Types of roots - Coarse roots or stilts

epiphytic roots

They are developed by plants that grow on the surface of other plants but without parasitizing them. They do not absorb nutrients from the supporting plant and simply anchor to it. Learn more about these with this other EcologíaVerde article about epiphytic plants: what they are, types and examples.

Types of roots - Epiphytic roots

Edible roots – list

There is a huge amount of roots that we consume regularly. Some are cultivated and are species domesticated by us in agriculture for consumption, although there are also roots of wild plants that are not normally consumed, but are suitable for consumption in times of urgency or need. These are some of the most consumed edible roots:

  • Ginger
  • Turmeric
  • Yucca
  • Beetroot
  • Potato
  • Carrot
  • Licorice
  • Parsnip
  • Radish
  • Valerian
  • Ginseng

They tend to be species rich in carbohydrates and starch, highly nutritious and valued. Also, some of the wild species of edible roots are the following:

  • Apron – Trifolium alpinum
  • Wild Garlic – Allium vineale
  • Wild Carrot – Daucus carota

In the case of wild species, it is vital to make sure that we know well the species that we are going to consume before doing so, since confusion can result in serious consequences with poisoning.

Types of roots - Edible roots - list

If you want to read more articles similar to types of rootswe recommend that you enter our category .

About the author


Leave a Comment