The main difference between root system and shoot system is that the root system consists of roots, tubers, and rhizoids of the plant whereas the shoot system consists of leaves, buds, flowers, and fruits of the plant. Furthermore, Root system occurs in the ground while shoot system occurs on the ground.
Root system and shoot system are the two main parts of a higher plant divided based on the relative position on the ground.
Key Areas Covered
1. What is Root System
– Definition, Components, Function
2. What is Shoot System
– Definition, Components, Function
3. What are the Similarities Between Root System and Shoot System
– Outline of Common Features
4. What is the Difference Between Root System and Shoot System
– Comparison of Key Differences
Photosynthesis, Rhizoids, Root System, Shoot System, Stem, Support, Transport, Tubers
What is Root System
Root system represents the underground part of the plant. It includes roots, tubers, and rhizoids.
Root – The major part of the root system is the roots. Two types of root systems can be identified based on the type of plant. They are tap roots and fibrous roots. Tap roots occur in dicots while fibrous roots occur in monocots.
Tubers – They are the enlarged, fleshy underground stem, which consists of buds capable of producing new plants.
Rhizoids – They are the horizontal stem from which the adventitious roots grow.
The four main functions of the root system are absorption of water, fastening of the plant body to the ground, storage of food and nutrients, and prevention of soil corrosion.
What is Shoot System
Shoot system refers to the components of a plant, which grows above the ground. It includes stems, leaves, flowers, seeds, fruit, and buds.
Stem – The main part of the shoot system is the stem. It supports the plant while conducting water and nutrients throughout the plant. There are two types of stems in a plant; herbaceous stem and woody stem. The herbaceous stem is bendable and the woody stem does not easily bend as it is hard.
Leaves – Leaves are the photosynthetic structures of a plant. The cells in the leaf contain chlorophyll that capture sunlight, which is the source of energy for the production of glucose.
Flower – Flower helps in the sexual reproduction of angiosperms.
Seed – Both angiosperms and gymnosperms produce seeds, which are the reproductive structures.
Fruit – Fruit contains seeds inside it.
Bud – Buds only occur in dicots, developing into a flower or a leaf. The two types of buds are apical bud and auxiliary bud.
Similarities Between Root System and Shoot System
- Root system and shoot system are the two main parts of a plant.
- Both systems are hard.
- They consist of xylem and phloem.
- They can undergo vegetative reproduction.
- Both systems store food in different plant species.
- Parts of both systems can be used as wood.
Difference Between Root System and Shoot System
The root system refers to the parts of a plant that generally grow beneath the ground, absorbing water and minerals while the shoot system refers to the aerial and erect part of the plant body which grows upwards.
Relative Position to the Ground
Root system occurs beneath the ground while shoot system occurs above the ground.
Root system grows into the ground while shoot system grows upwards.
Root system is composed of roots, tubers, and rhizomes while shoot system is composed of leaves, buds, flowers, and fruits.
The main function of the root system of a plant is to absorb water and minerals from the soil while providing support to the plant on the ground. On the other hand, the main function of the shoot system is photosynthesis, transport, and reproduction.
Root system does not undergo photosynthesis while shoot system undergoes photosynthesis.
Root system does not undergo sexual reproduction while shoot system undergoes sexual reproduction by means of flowers.
The parts of the root system cannot be used as timber while the parts of the shoot system can be used as timber.
The root system is composed of roots, tubers, and rhizoids while the shoot system is composed of stem, leaves, flower, seeds, fruit, and buds. The main function of the root system is to absorb water and minerals from the soil while the main function of the shoot system is to produce food by photosynthesis. The main difference between root system and shoot system is their structure and function.
1. “The Plant Root System and Its Functions.” CropsReview.Com, Available Here
2. “Characteristics of Shoot Systems.” CliffsNotes, Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 2016, Available Here
1. “Primary and secondary cotton roots” (Public Domain) via Commons Wikimedia
2. “Plant” By Kelvinsong – Own work (CC BY-SA 3.0) via Commons Wikimedia
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