PERUMALLA, C. J., PETERSON, C. A. & ENSTONE, D. E., 1990. A survey of angiosperm species to detect hypodermal Casparian bands. I. Roots with a uniseriate hypodermis and epidermis. Roots of 181 species from 53 families were surveyed to determine the frequency of Casparian bands in hypodermal layers. For six species, inconclusive data were obtained. The roots of the remaining 175 species were divided into three categories on the basis of this survey. In the first, a hypodermis is absent (12 species): no wall modifications were observed in the outer cortex and this region was permeable to the apoplastic dye Cellufluor. In the second, a hypodermis is present, but a hypodermal Casparian band is absent (seven species). In roots of six species, no wall modifications were detected in the hypodermis; the one remaining species had lignified phi thickenings which were permeable to Cellufluor. In the third, both a hypodermis and a hypodermal Casparian band are present (156 species). These Casparian bands consisted of suberin deposits throughout the width of the anticlinal walls of the hypodermis. The tangential walls of the hypodermis were also suberized, indicating that suberin lamellae were probably also present. Hypodermal Casparian bands were found in roots of hydrophytic, mesophytic and xerophytic species and in members of primitive as well as advanced families. The widespread occurrence of these bands (in 89% of the species surveyed) suggests that they were present in the type ancestral to the flowering plants and that this feature has been retained by many species in this group. The epidermal cell walls of the majority of species examined were suberized but were permeable to Cellufluor.