Difference between rhizoids and rhizomes

Main difference

The main difference between rhizoids and rhizomes is that rhizoids are structurally similar to roots, found or found in fungi and primordial plants, while rhizomes are stacks or bundles of roots and stems of higher plants moderately underground.

Rhizoids vs Rhizomes

Rhizoids can be found as unicellular or multicellular, while rhizomes are only found as multicellular. Rhizoids can consider root-like structures found mainly in primitive plants and fungi; on the other hand, the rhizomes are considered as horizontal underground stems in continuous ascent from which the adjacent and adventitious roots are formed.

Primitive fungi and primitive plants such as liverworts, mosses, and hornworts contain rhizoids; on the contrary, vascular plants such as poplars, bamboos, ginger, turmeric, lotus, etc. They consist of rhizomes. Root-like structures are present in rhizoids, while, on the other hand, specialized root bundles of stems are present in rhizomes that form underground or grow close to the soil surface.

The function that the rhizoids perform is that they absorb water and minerals from the soil and provide anchorage to the plants; Rather, the main function of rhizomes is to store food and aid in the vegetative propagation of plants, and the stem is modified to store starch and protein. Rhizoids are also known as a fine hair-like structure that mostly resembles the root of the plant, but they are not true roots; on the other hand, rhizomes are also known as creeping root stalk that contains both nodes and internodes.

Comparative chart

Rhizoids Rhizomes
A simple structure that resembles roots but in a more primitive form that provides anchoring and water absorption for plants is known as rhizoids. The specialized stems found in a plant that consist of true roots that are found underground are known as rhizomes.
Considered as
Considered as root-shaped structures found primarily in primitive plants and fungi. Considered as horizontal underground stems in continuous ascent from which the adjacent and adventitious roots are formed.
Type of Plants
Primitive fungi and primitive plants such as liverworts, mosses, and hornworts Vascular plants such as poplars, bamboos, ginger, turmeric, lotus, etc.
Stem / Root
There are root-like structures Bundles of specialized root stems are present that form underground
Unicellular / Multicellular
Found as unicellular or multicellular Only found as multicellular
Function
They absorb water and minerals from the soil and provide anchoring for plants. They store food and aid in the vegetative propagation of plants, and the stem is modified to store starch and protein.
Also know as
Also known as a fine hair-like structure that mostly resembles the root of the plant, but they are not true roots. Also known as a creeping root stem that contains both nodes and internodes
What are rhizoids?

The structures are root-like, but not true roots found in primitive plants such as mosses, liverworts, hornworts, fungi, and bryophytes. Primitive plants do not contain a body that is differentiated into roots, stem, and leaves. The rhizoids mainly help in the absorption of nutrients, water and minerals from the soil and also anchor the plant body to the substrate.

The rhizoids can be present as multicellular or unicellular rhizoids. Unicellular rhizoids are present in liverworts. In comparison, multicellular rhizoids are present in mosses.

Rhizoids are present in the gametophyte because the notable life stage of primary plants is usually the gametophyte. The hair-like roots of vascular plants can also be known as rhizoids.

Mushrooms also contain rhizoids. Fungal rhizoids consist of small dividing hyphae that normally grow down the stem, attaching the fungal hyphae to the substrate. These fungal hyphae discharge digestive enzymes into food material and absorb organic material and digested nutrients.

Rhizoids generally absorb water from the soil through capillary action, the action in which water moves between the strands of rhizoids but not through each of the rhizoids as water does in real roots. Rhizoids are known as trichomes in plants that are present in the soil, which attach the plant to the ground.

In some algae, there is a broad rhizoidal structure that allows the algae to adhere to a grimy substrate from which the algae can absorb nutrients. In microscopic free-floating organisms, no rhizoids are present.

What are rhizomes?

The rhizomes grow continuously underground, horizontal stems of higher vascular plants. Rhizomes are also known as a creeping root stem, which contains both nodes and internodes. Rhizomes can form roots and shoots from them, which summarizes that rhizomes are also included in vegetative propagation, that is the type of asexual reproduction in vascular plants.

Plants such as bamboos, poplars, ginger, turmeric, lotus, etc., depend a lot on rhizomes for their correct reproduction. The stem of the rhizomes is modified to store starch and protein, which is vital and requires the subsistence of plants in critical conditions. In addition, the rhizomes that store food are consumed in an important way as food also by animals and humans.

Some examples of edible rhizomes are ginger, lotus, turmeric, potato, carrot, and sweet potato, which are used directly for cooking. The rhizome is the only stem present in some plants such as ferns and water lilies. If the rhizome is shed from its plant body, each part of the rhizome can give rise to a new plant. The main function of the rhizome is to store food, protein and other nutrients.

Many plants contain rhizomes that generally grow above the ground, or some are found on the surface of the ground, which contains some ferns, species of irises, the scattered stems of which are rhizomes. Plants with underground growing rhizomes are bamboo, ginger, Chinese lantern, Venus flytrap, western poison oak, hops, weeds, Johnson grass, Alstroemeria, purple nutsedge, and Bermuda grass.

Many rhizomes generally produce a single layer, but in giant horsetails, the rhizome forms several layers. Some rhizomes have many culinary values.

Key differences

  1. Rhizoids are known as root-shaped structures found mainly in primitive plants and fungi; On the other hand, rhizomes are known as underground stems that grow continuously, horizontally from which the lateral and adventitious roots are produced and they are also known as creeping stem that contains both nodes and internodes.
  2. The type of primitive plants consisting of rhizoids are mosses, liverworts, and hornworts; On the contrary, the type of vascular plants that consists of rhizomes are poplars, bamboos, ginger, turmeric, lotus, etc.
  3. Root-like structures, but are not true roots found in rhizoids, while particular stems that are true roots are found in rhizomes.
  4. There are unicellular or multicellular rhizoids; on the other hand, only multicellular rhizomes are usually present.
  5. Anchoring plants and absorbing water and nutrients from the soil is the main function of the rhizoid that it performs, while on the other hand, modified stems to store food, protein and starch and aid in vegetative propagation is the vital function of rhizomes.

Final Thought

The above discussion concludes that both rhizoids and rhizomes are root-related structures, but rhizoids are not true roots and are found in primitive plants and fungi primarily involved in the absorption of nutrients from the soil. Rather, rhizomes are true roots found in vascular plants like bamboo, ginger, poplar, etc. and involved in the storage of food and protein.

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