Plastids, found in plants and some parasites, are of endosymbiotic origin. The best-characterized plastid is the plant cell chloroplast. Plastids provide essential metabolic and signaling functions, such as the photosynthetic process in chloroplasts. However, the role of plastids is not limited to production of metabolites. Plastids affect numerous aspects of plant growth and development through biogenesis, varying functional states and metabolic activities. Examples include, but are not limited to, embryogenesis, leaf development, gravitropism, temperature response and plant-microbe interactions. In this review, we summarize the versatile roles of plastids in plant growth and development.