Tag: plant perception

Are plants conscious?

We were sent the link to this TEDx talk by Professor Stefano Macuso, one of the most important figures in the field of plant neurobiology:

We already know that plants have all our senses (they can see, hear, touch, smell and see) without the organs usually associated with them and they have some more specific exclusive senses. We also know that they have very important and intense social lifes. But, are plants intelligent? Can they solve problems, communicate, and navigate their surroundings?

In this talk, Stefano Mancuso presents a new paradigm in our understanding of the vegetal world. He argues that plants process information, sleep, remember, and signal to one another-showing that, far from passive machines, plants are intelligent and aware.

Stefano Mancuso is a lecturer in the University of Florence, director of the International Laboratory of Plant Neurobiology (LINV) in Florence, Italy, and a founder of the International Society for Plant Signaling and Behavior. He is the author of several books and more than 250 scientific papers published in international magazines and journals. “La Repubblica” newspaper has listed him among the 20 people who will change our lives.

Do you think that plants are conscious and aware of their environment? Tell us your thoughts in the comments!

Trees Have Social Networks, Too

One of our long-time supporters sent us an article from the New York Times about the work of Peter Wohlleben, a German Forest Ranger who published the book, “The Hidden Life of Trees: What They Feel, How They Communicate — Discoveries From a Secret World.” Presenting scientific research and his own observations in highly anthropomorphic terms, the matter-of-fact Mr. Wohlleben has delighted readers with the news — long known to biologists — that trees in the forest are social beings.

Mr. Wohlleben invites readers to imagine what a tree might feel when its bark tears (“Ouch!”). “I use a very human language,” he explained. “Scientific language removes all the emotion, and people don’t understand it anymore. When I say, ‘Trees suckle their children,’ everyone knows immediately what I mean.”

This is very different than the Music of the Plants way of speaking, which aims to create a new vocabulary to describe what plants experience, but it brings up the question, “would it be easier to understand the plant world if we use human language to describe non-human emotions?” Tell us what you think in the comments.

You can read the full article on the New York Times website.

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