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Methods and Technologies at the
Jülich Plant Phenotyping Centre


Measuring the architecture of the root system


GROWSCREEN-Root is a image-based software, which allows the automatic analysis of root architecture. Images of whole root systems grown in agar-filled Petri dishes are acquired with a CCD-camera. The key element of the software is the extraction of a tree model for root system.


The following parameters can be determined automatically and shown in a false-color image:

  • length of primary root
  • total length of lateral roots
  • number of lateral roots and
  • angle of branching, which represents the angle between a primary root and branched lateral roots.

Results (example)


The example shows data of an experiment on root growth as affected by root zone temperature


Nagel K.A., Kastenholz B., Jahnke S., van Dusschoten D., Aach T., Mühlich M., Truhn D., Scharr H., Terjung S., Walter A., Schurr U. (2009) Temperature responses of roots: impact on growth, root system architecture and implications for phenotyping Functional Plant Biology. 36, 947-959.

Additional Information

 Jülich Plant Phenotyping Centre




a development of

Growth and Metabolism and

ET (Enabling Technology)


link to the research area




Dr. Kerstin Nagel










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