Difference Between Parallel and Reticulate venation

Veins form a part of the vascular tissue emerging from the stem to the tip of the leaves. They consist of xylem and phloem, enclosing sclerenchyma and parenchyma surrounded by sheath cells. Arrangement of leaves in a leaf is referred to as venation and that is distributed widely amongst diverse plant species. It plays a vital role in identifying and differentiating plants in their features.

Venation renders mechanical assistance along with protection, development and coordination between plant parts. Explore the differences between parallel and reticulate venation.

Parallel Venation

  • Veins are parallelly arranged with one another and mostly occurs in monocots
  • Presence of midveins classifies parallel venation into –
  • Pinnate parallel venation/unicostate parallel venation – veins emerge from evident midvein found in the centre of the leaf lamina from the base to the apex where veins develop perpendicular to the midvein towards the margin and are parallel to each other. Example- as seen in banana leaves
  • Palmate parallel venation/multicostate parallel venation – several prominent veins, running parallel to each other. It, in turn, can be of two types – convergent parallel venation and divergent parallel venation. Example – Borassus, Grass

Reticulate venation

  • Veins are arranged in the form of a network and mostly occurs in dicots
  • It can be classified into the following two types:
  • Pinnate reticulate venation/unicostate reticulate venation – one midvein is present and all other veins form a mesh-like structure

Example – as seen in Mangifera leaves

  • Palmate reticulate venation/multicostate reticulate venation – Midribs are found, others veins form a network. The venation here is of two types – convergent and divergent reticulate venation

Difference between Parallel and Reticulate venation

The table below depicts a few differences between Parallel venation and Reticulate venation

Parallel venation Reticulate venation
What it means
Veins are arranged parallel to one another all through the lamina or leaf blade Veins are arranged in a web-like arrangement all through the lamina or leaf blade
Vein orientation
Parallel to each Forms a web-like appearance
Observed in
Monocots Dicots
Bamboo, banana, grass, wheat, maize Hibiscus, Ficus, Mango


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