Chapter Outline

Roots are a plant's link to the underground environment.

Taproot systems have one large primary root and many smaller branch roots.

Fibrous root systems consist of a mass of similarly sized roots.

The root cap protects the growing parts of a root as the root grows through the soil.

The subapical region of the root includes the zones of cell division, cell elongation, and cell maturation.

The root consists of layers of different tissues.

The rhizosphere surrounds each root.

Several factors control the growth and distribution of roots.

Depending on their environment and age, plants shift resources to roots or shoots.

Roots often possess special adaptations to the environment.

Many epiphytes are adapted to life entirely above the ground.

Roots play key roles in the ecology and evolution of plants.

Mycorrhizae are mutualistic relationships between a plant and a fungus.

Mutualistic relationships may evolve between two organisms that require different resources.

Roots of legumes often establish mutualistic relationships with nitrogen-fixing bacteria.

Because of their root systems, some plants affect the ecology of an entire community.

Perspective 7.1 Putting Things Back

Many roots are economically important.

Soils are the source of minerals for plants and other organisms in an ecosystem.

The physical environment of the soil is a major factor that controls plant growth.

Plants obtain essential elements from the soil.

Essential elements are required by plants for normal growth and reproduction.

Most essential elements have several functions in plants.

Deficiencies of essential elements disrupt plant growth and development.

Some plants accumulate large amounts of various elements.

Soils in rain forests are deficient in most nutrients.

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