bas20060914Basil Study shows plants might be capable of talking using sound waves

If plants could talk human language, what do you think they would say to us? Well, they would obviously say something like “stop chopping us down” or “stop letting your dog pee on us.”  Despite all our technological innovations, though, human still cannot understand the ‘languages’ that is beyond our own creation.

So while many us are still trying to figure out what our pets are trying to tell us when it whimper or screech, plant scientists are trying to figure out if plants can indeed communicate with each other.  It’s evident that plants deploy various strategies to protect themselves, absorb nutrients, and germination.  However, researchers from the University of Western Australia have some evidence to suggest that plants might be ‘talking’ with each other on a nano-scale.

Capsicum annuum1 Study shows plants might be capable of talking using sound waves

In their experiment, the scientists planted chili pepper seeds near a basil plant, which is believed to be a ‘good’ neighboring plant that promotes the germination and growth of other plants.  The team then blocked the basil’s ‘positive influence’ via various concocted methods, and observed the chili’s germination.  The result was that the seed germination was “positively enhanced by the presence of a ‘good’ neighbor, even when the known signaling modalities[1] were blocked.”

The team claims that since the known signaling processes between basil and seeds were eliminated there may be an ‘alternative’ method for the basil to communicate with the chili.  There is no conclusive evidence to suggest that plants may actually speak to each other, but the basil and chili seed study is proving that even plants are complicated creatures—maybe even more complicated than us.



[1] The researcher states that these ‘modalities’ included light, touch and/or chemical.