Do plants think, have awareness, conscience, emotion?
September 4, 2010 at 11:30 pm #13728vangraParticipant
I used to watch many nature docos many years back and am starting to revisit them now. Anyway, I’ve seen some eerie things that make me wonder if plants may have a "conscience" or ability to think.
They respond to many stimuli and react accordingly. They can respond to light, pressure, temperature, gravity, water, nutrients in soil, they can release toxins when attacked by predators, they can communicate chemically.
I read about how tomato plants when attacked will release a certain chemical in the air and other tomato plants will pick it up and respond by producing a toxin that will deter the attacker.
I read somewhere that plants may have seasonal memory because they will ready their ‘immunity" for different season predators.
There is another plant, I forgot the name, that when touched will instantly wilt, Im guessing because when wilted it looks less appetising that fresher looking plants or maybe so predator insects will fall off the leaves.
What do others think about this? Do any of you have any other remarkable stories to add to this.
September 6, 2010 at 6:29 am #101172biohazardParticipantquote vangra:
That plant is probably Mimosa pudica, a member of the Mimosa genus.
There are indeed many fascinating traits in plants that sometimes make it look as if they were conscious being. Just think about Venus flytrap or sundews, for example. Also, in a forest, if you look carefully you are likely to see that the trees almost never touch each other, even though they can grow very tightly packed. If you lie on your back and watch upwards, you can sometimes see the patterns of "avoidance" in places where the tree branches avoid hitting the branches of other trees. The trees have an ability to sense where their neighbours are and avoid touching them.
However, for a conscious mind you need a central nervous system of some kind. Actually I think the current view among most scientists is that only few of the most "advanced" mammals are conscious in a sense that they are aware of themselves (such as the apes, humans and whales).
Emotions are much more widerly distributed among the living beings, one can easily tell when a cat or a dog is frightened or excited and so on, and most animals are also aware of their surroundings, more or less.
As far as the plants go, I would say that the only thing they have is a limited awareness of their surroundings – be it facing to the sun or snapping a fly for example. These are just gentically preprogrammed patterns and plants do not have any decision-making abilities or means to affect their own behaviour beyond their genomic actions.
So, plants lack the possibility to think, feel or have any kind of consciousness, but you could say they have limited awareness of their surroundings.
September 15, 2011 at 8:57 am #106349TrevorwinParticipant
I always knew plants have feelings, like music, are conscious living entities. they actually, have profound consciousness. Plants, no doubt have there own time construct. again, probably has to do with Quantum Physics.
Great experiments that are being done with plants.
Have a lot of plants, literally have 12 foot high tropical plants in my living-room, have high ceilings. They must like my Rock and Roll music (LOL)
You should treat your carrots better, Yavanna. (LOL):D
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