The respiration of excised hypocotyls and of isolated hypocotyl mitochondria from soybean [Glycine max (L.) Merr., var. Wayne] was determined in various concentrations of sucrose and potassium chloride. Hypocotyl oxygen uptake declined with increasing solute concentration; no specific effects of either solute were apparent. Mitochondrial state III respiration was strongly inhibited as the solute concentrations were raised and there was in addition a specific inhibitory effect of the salt. State IV respiration, however, was unaffected by the presence of osmoticum. ADP/O ratios were also unaffected, except at high potassium chloride concentrations (470 mm). The primary effect of solutes was thus to limit the rate of substrate oxidation.