We investigated (1) the effect of constant and altered inorganic phosphate (Pi) supply (1–100 mmol m–3) on proteoid root production by white lupin (Lupinus albus L.); and (2) the variation in citrate efflux, enzyme activity and phosphate uptake along the proteoid root axis in solution culture. Proteoid root formation was greatest at Pi solution concentrations of 1–10 mmol m–3 and was suppressed at 25 mmol m–3 Pi and higher. Except at 1 mmol m–3 Pi, the formation of proteoid roots did not affect plant dry matter yields or shoot to root dry matter ratios, indicating that proteoid roots can form under conditions of adequate P supply and not at the expense of dry matter production. Plants with over 50% of the root system as proteoid roots had tissue P concentrations considered adequate for maximum growth, providing additional evidence that proteoid roots can form on P-sufficient plants. There was an inverse relationship between the Pi concentration in the youngest mature leaf and proteoid root formation. Citrate efflux and the activities of enzymes associated with citric acid synthesis (phosphoenolpyruvate carboxylase and malate dehydrogenase) varied along the proteoid root axis, being greatest in young proteoid rootlets of the 1–3 cm region from the root tip. Citrate release from the 0–1 and 5–9 cm regions of the proteoid root was only 7% (per unit root length) of that from the 1–3 cm segment. Electrical potential and 32Pi uptake measurements showed that Pi uptake was more uniform along the proteoid root than citrate efflux.