In order to determine what structural changes are associated with the onset of graviresponsiveness by plant roots, we have monitored the quantitative ultrastructures of columella (i.e., graviperceptive) cells in primary and secondary roots of Ricinus communis. The relative volumes of cellular components in lateral (i.e., minimally graviresponsive) roots were not significantly different from those of primary roots. The relative volumes of cellular components in secondary roots growing laterally were not significantly different from those of graviresponsive secondary roots. Therefore, the onset of graviresponsiveness by secondary roots of R. communis is not correlated with changes in organellar concentrations in columella cells. These results are discussed relative to a model for the differential graviresponsiveness of plant roots.