Food for thought??

General discussions of forests and trees that do not focus on a specific species or specific location.

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Lucas
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Food for thought??

Post by Lucas » Sun Oct 19, 2014 1:01 pm

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencetech/ ... eaten.html

"Researchers from the University of Missouri have found that plants hear, and react, to the sound of eating caterpillars but ignore the sound of wind."
We travel the Milky way together, trees and men. - John Muir

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Erik Danielsen
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Re: Food for thought??

Post by Erik Danielsen » Sun Oct 19, 2014 5:53 pm

I like to think that laser beams are experienced by trees as a pleasant tickling sensation in the tops of their crowns.

Really, though, the developing field of plant cognition is definitely fascinating new territory. I mean, we're talking about long-lived organisms with highly complex dendritic networks processing environmental stimuli via electrical and chemical transmissions resulting in sometimes very sophisticated physiological responses. We don't know enough at present to even think about how to propose a hypothesis or design an experiment to test this quandry, but I do think that "do trees think, or perform some analogous function?" might be a question to take seriously sometime in the not too distant future. I'll admit, my bias would be yes- even if their process of "thought" looks a lot different from what we're used to considering.

Joe

Re: Food for thought??

Post by Joe » Mon Oct 20, 2014 7:56 am

since we hardly know what a "mind" is- we can't say that plants don't have some sort of cognition

I bet that when it rains and then the sun comes out, they "feel" happy.

When I mark a stand for thinning, I ponder if the trees are aware of me and their fate. I feel like God as I determine which shall live and which shall go off to the sawmill or get chipped for a pellet or biomass facility.

but heck, stands often start off with thousands of trees per acre and if left to maturity might only be 50 per acre- so death will happen in the forest but I'll make the decisions, not the raw competition and luck of the draw....

when the thinning project is completed, the forest looks better- at least to me--- perhaps those trees that are left are now happier than they would have been- more room to grow- so the net effect is more "happy" trees... I'd like to think so...
Joe

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