root–shoot ratio

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The ratio of the amount of plant tissues that have supportive functions to the amount of those that have growth functions. Plants with a higher proportion of roots can compete more effectively for soil nutrients, while those with a higher proportion of shoots can collect more light energy. Large proportions of shoot production are characteristic of vegetation in early successional phases, while high proportions of root production are characteristic of climax vegetational phases.

Subjects: Ecology and Conservation — Plant Sciences and Forestry.

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