Haustorium

rootlike structure or a structure that grows into or around another structure to absorb water or nutrients

A haustorium (plural: haustoria) is a term in botany. It is a root-like structure which attaches to a tree or other plant host. Fungi and parasitic plants like mistletoe use haustoria to get nutrients from hosts.[1]

Haustoria of creeping mistletoe on a Eucalyptus tree
Multiple Mistletoe haustoria on a dead gum tree

Contrast with the term epiphyte, which means "living on". Many other plants live on large trees, but only a few have hausteria.

ReferencesEdit

  1. Szabo, Les (July 3, 2001). "Hidden robbers: The role of fungal haustoria in parasitism of plants". PNAS. 98 (14): 7654–7655. doi:10.1073/pnas.151262398. PMC 35395. PMID 11438718.