To determine if an increased aluminium (Al) sensitivity is the result of greater accumulation of Al in root apices, the quantity and distribution of Al in root apex cells of Danthonia linkii Kunth and Microlaena stipoides (Labill.) R.Br. was investigated by X-ray microanalysis. Seedlings were grown in nutrient solution with 0, 185 and 370 µM total Al for 24 h after which the terminal 5 mm of the roots were excised, rapidly frozen and embedded using freeze-substitution. Elemental distribution maps of root apices showed that Al had accumulated in the nuclei of root cap and meristematic cells in Al-stressed roots of D. linkii but not in M. stipoides. Al appeared to be co-localised with phosphorous (P) in the nuclei of these cells. Quantitation of Al revealed that Al-stressed root apex cells of D. linkiiaccumulated significantly more Al than M. stipoides. Exposure of D. linkii roots to Al resulted in substantial increases in the P content of root apex cells, and a significant positive correlation was found between Al and P in both root cap and meristematic cells. Analysis of intracellular structures showed that the majority of Al had accumulated in the nuclei of cells. A significant positive correlation was found between Al and P in the nuclei, but not in the cytoplasm or cell walls. No positive correlation was found between Al and P in root apex cells of M. stipoides.