Clever plants communicate
It has also been noted that plants can warn each other about pest attacks.
Plants growing naturally have some capabilities for deterring pest insects, but from studies carried out, the plants can take a bit of time to come to full alert and protection. I have written an article on how spraying plants with a weak solution of aspirin can put them into full alert mode.
Readers will be familiar with mycorrhizal fungi which is found in healthy soils. The mycorrhizal attach themselves to plant roots and gather nutrients and moisture to the benefit of the plant in exchange for carbohydrates. This can increase a plant’s root zone by 800 per cent.
The fungi threads also link plants to one another like a underground internet and it is thought this is how plants can communicate with each other. If a plant sends out a warning message that it is being attacked by aphids, surrounding plants start putting their defense mechanisms into operation while relaying the message to other plants.
The warning prompts plants to increase production of volatile chemicals that repel aphids for example, while attracting wasps, their natural enemy.
Researchers have experimented by removing the connecting mycorrhizal, and those plants quickly succumbed to infestations, presumably because they didn’t receive a warning message.
These studies stress the importance of mycorrhizal fungi to garden plants. Chemical fungicides, herbicides and insecticides along with chlorinated water, kill mycorrhizal fungi and leave plants vulnerable to attack and unable to obtain the full benefit from nutrients and moisture.
Mycorrhizal fungi also assists in the building of garden humus which sequesters carbon and retains water and minerals. Mycorrhizal can be boosted by applying Mycorrcin, a special natural food that stimulates the development of the beneficial fungi. It also helps provide beneficial bacteria to colonise the foliage and reduce the ability for fungus diseases such as black spot, from establishing.
Gardeners can also make their plants happy and healthy by playing them soothing music.
Plants can also read people’s moods and gardeners who love their gardens have a great healing asset. As you spend time looking after your plants they are looking after you. Clever plants. Problems ring me at 0800 466464 (Palmerston North 3570606) Email firstname.lastname@example.org Web site www.gardenew.co.nz
Do you talk to your plants? According to research, your plants are certainly talking to each other using a kind of underground interweb. Photo: FAIRFAX NZ