Brilliant Green

The Surprising History and Science of Plant Intelligence

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Author: Stefano Mancuso,Alessandra Viola

Publisher: Island Press

ISBN: 1610916042

Category: Science

Page: 184

View: 4100

Are plants intelligent? Can they solve problems, communicate, and navigate their surroundings? Or are they passive, incapable of independent action or social behavior? Philosophers and scientists have pondered these questions since ancient Greece, most often concluding that plants are unthinking and inert: they are too silent, too sedentary -- just too different from us. Yet discoveries over the past fifty years have challenged these ideas, shedding new light on the extraordinary capabilities and complex interior lives of plants. In Brilliant Green, Stefano Mancuso, a leading scientist and founder of the field of plant neurobiology, presents a new paradigm in our understanding of the vegetal world. Combining a historical perspective with the latest in plant science, Mancuso argues that, due to cultural prejudices and human arrogance, we continue to underestimate plants. In fact, they process information, sleep, remember, and signal to one another -- showing that, far from passive machines, plants are intelligent and aware. Through a survey of plant capabilities from sight and touch to communication, Mancuso challenges our notion of intelligence, presenting a vision of plant life that is more sophisticated than most imagine. Plants have much to teach us, from network building to innovations in robotics and man-made materials -- but only if we understand more about how they live. Part botany lesson, part manifesto, Brilliant Green is an engaging and passionate examination of the inner workings of the plant kingdom. Financial support for the translation of this book has been provided by SEPS: Segretariato Europeo Per Le Pubblicazioni Scientifiche.

Brilliant Green

The Surprising History and Science of Plant Intelligence

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Author: Stefano Mancuso,Alessandra Viola

Publisher: Island Press

ISBN: 1610916034

Category: Nature

Page: 173

View: 7522

In this book, a leading plant scientist offers a new understanding of the botanical world and a passionate argument for intelligent plant life. Are plants intelligent? Can they solve problems, communicate, and navigate their surroundings? For centuries, philosophers and scientists have argued that plants are unthinking and inert, yet discoveries over the past fifty years have challenged this idea, shedding new light on the complex interior lives of plants. In Brilliant Green, leading scientist 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. Part botany lesson, part manifesto, Brilliant Green is an engaging and passionate examination of the inner workings of the plant kingdom.--

Brilliant Green

The Surprising History and Science of Plant Intelligence

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Author: Stefano Mancuso,Alessandra Viola

Publisher: Island Press

ISBN: 9781610917315

Category: Science

Page: 192

View: 3120

Are plants intelligent? Can they solve problems, communicate, and navigate their surroundings? Or are they passive, incapable of independent action or social behavior? Philosophers and scientists have pondered these questions since ancient Greece, most often concluding that plants are unthinking and inert: they are too silent, too sedentary -- just too different from us. Yet discoveries over the past fifty years have challenged these ideas, shedding new light on the extraordinary capabilities and complex interior lives of plants. In Brilliant Green, Stefano Mancuso, a leading scientist and founder of the field of plant neurobiology, presents a new paradigm in our understanding of the vegetal world. Combining a historical perspective with the latest in plant science, Mancuso argues that, due to cultural prejudices and human arrogance, we continue to underestimate plants. In fact, they process information, sleep, remember, and signal to one another -- showing that, far from passive machines, plants are intelligent and aware. Through a survey of plant capabilities from sight and touch to communication, Mancuso challenges our notion of intelligence, presenting a vision of plant life that is more sophisticated than most imagine. Plants have much to teach us, from network building to innovations in robotics and man-made materials -- but only if we understand more about how they live. Part botany lesson, part manifesto, Brilliant Green is an engaging and passionate examination of the inner workings of the plant kingdom. Financial support for the translation of this book has been provided by SEPS: Segretariato Europeo Per Le Pubblicazioni Scientifiche.

The Revolutionary Genius of Plants

A New Understanding of Plant Intelligence and Behavior

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Author: Stefano Mancuso

Publisher: Simon and Schuster

ISBN: 1501187872

Category: Nature

Page: 240

View: 9513

“Fascinating…full of optimism…this quick, accessible read will appeal to anyone with interest in how plants continue to surprise us.” —Library Journal Do plants have intelligence? Do they have memory? Are they better problem solvers than people? The Revolutionary Genius of Plants—a fascinating, paradigm-shifting work that upends everything you thought you knew about plants—makes a compelling scientific case that these and other astonishing ideas are all true. Plants make up eighty percent of the weight of all living things on earth, and yet it is easy to forget that these innocuous, beautiful organisms are responsible for not only the air that lets us survive, but for many of our modern comforts: our medicine, food supply, even our fossil fuels. On the forefront of uncovering the essential truths about plants, world-renowned scientist Stefano Mancuso reveals the surprisingly sophisticated ability of plants to innovate, to remember, and to learn, offering us creative solutions to the most vexing technological and ecological problems that face us today. Despite not having brains or central nervous systems, plants perceive their surroundings with an even greater sensitivity than animals. They efficiently explore and react promptly to potentially damaging external events thanks to their cooperative, shared systems; without any central command centers, they are able to remember prior catastrophic events and to actively adapt to new ones. Every page of The Revolutionary Genius of Plants bubbles over with Stefano Mancuso’s infectious love for plants and for the eye-opening research that makes it more and more clear how remarkable our fellow inhabitants on this planet really are. In his hands, complicated science is wonderfully accessible, and he has loaded the book with gorgeous photographs that make for an unforgettable reading experience. The Revolutionary Genius of Plants opens the doors to a new understanding of life on earth.

What a Plant Knows

A Field Guide to the Senses

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Author: Daniel Chamovitz

Publisher: Scientific American / Farrar, Straus and Giroux

ISBN: 1429946237

Category: Science

Page: 192

View: 922

How does a Venus flytrap know when to snap shut? Can it actually feel an insect's tiny, spindly legs? And how do cherry blossoms know when to bloom? Can they actually remember the weather? For centuries we have collectively marveled at plant diversity and form—from Charles Darwin's early fascination with stems to Seymour Krelborn's distorted doting in Little Shop of Horrors. But now, in What a Plant Knows, the renowned biologist Daniel Chamovitz presents an intriguing and scrupulous look at how plants themselves experience the world—from the colors they see to the schedules they keep. Highlighting the latest research in genetics and more, he takes us into the inner lives of plants and draws parallels with the human senses to reveal that we have much more in common with sunflowers and oak trees than we may realize. Chamovitz shows how plants know up from down, how they know when a neighbor has been infested by a group of hungry beetles, and whether they appreciate the Led Zeppelin you've been playing for them or if they're more partial to the melodic riffs of Bach. Covering touch, sound, smell, sight, and even memory, Chamovitz encourages us all to consider whether plants might even be aware of their surroundings. A rare inside look at what life is really like for the grass we walk on, the flowers we sniff, and the trees we climb, What a Plant Knows offers us a greater understanding of science and our place in nature.

Communication in Plants

Neuronal Aspects of Plant Life

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Author: František Baluška,Stefano Mancuso,Dieter Volkmann

Publisher: Springer Science & Business Media

ISBN: 3540285164

Category: Science

Page: 438

View: 6665

Plant neurobiology is a newly emerging field of plant sciences. It covers signalling and communication at all levels of biological organization – from molecules up to ecological communities. In this book, plants are presented as intelligent and social organisms with complex forms of communication and information processing. Authors from diverse backgrounds such as molecular and cellular biology, electrophysiology, as well as ecology treat the most important aspects of plant communication, including the plant immune system, abilities of plants to recognize self, signal transduction, receptors, plant neurotransmitters and plant neurophysiology. Further, plants are able to recognize the identity of herbivores and organize the defence responses accordingly. The similarities in animal and plant neuronal/immune systems are discussed too. All these hidden aspects of plant life and behaviour will stimulate further intense investigations in order to understand the communicative plants in their whole complexity.

Plant Behaviour and Intelligence

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Author: Anthony Trewavas

Publisher: Oxford University Press, USA

ISBN: 0199539545

Category: Science

Page: 291

View: 8422

This novel book is the first to properly address the controversial issue of plant intelligence, arguing convincingly that cells and whole plants growing in competitive wild conditions exhibit aspects of plant behaviour that can be accurately described as intelligent". The author expands on three main insights drawn by the Nobel Prize winning botanist Barbara McClintock: firstly that plant cells may have knowledge of themselves; secondly that they receive challenges which lead to behavioural changes; finally, that they do so in a manner which implies assessment and intelligent behaviour. By equating the concept of intelligent behaviour with that of adaptively variable behaviour, the book provides a novel integration of signalling, behaviour, and behavioural ecology, all set within the context of plant studies. Plant Behaviour and Intelligence begins with chapters on the origins and multicellular nature of plant life, before going on to discuss novel behaviours such as branch initiation and growth, unusual behaviour of leaves, and how roots reconstruct their sensing systems and are capable of self-recognition. An entire chapter is devoted to the nature of intelligence and another to the vexed question of "consciousness", as applied to plant life. This advanced textbook will be suitable for senior undergraduate and graduate level students taking related courses in plant ecology and evolution. It will also be of relevance and use to a broader audience of professional plant ecologists seeking an authoritative reference text to help them navigate the complexity and controversy of plant behaviour."

Mushroom

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Author: Nicholas P. Money

Publisher: Oxford University Press

ISBN: 019991236X

Category: Science

Page: 224

View: 2582

An illuminating look at the wonders of mushroom biology and an exploration of their enduring appeal

Plant Sensing and Communication

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Author: Richard Karban

Publisher: University of Chicago Press

ISBN: 022626484X

Category: Science

Page: 240

View: 3343

The news that a flowering weed—mousear cress (Arabidopsis thaliana)—can sense the particular chewing noise of its most common caterpillar predator and adjust its chemical defenses in response led to headlines announcing the discovery of the first “hearing” plant. As plants lack central nervous systems (and, indeed, ears), the mechanisms behind this “hearing” are unquestionably very different from those of our own acoustic sense, but the misleading headlines point to an overlooked truth: plants do in fact perceive environmental cues and respond rapidly to them by changing their chemical, morphological, and behavioral traits. In Plant Sensing and Communication, Richard Karban provides the first comprehensive overview of what is known about how plants perceive their environments, communicate those perceptions, and learn. Facing many of the same challenges as animals, plants have developed many similar capabilities: they sense light, chemicals, mechanical stimulation, temperature, electricity, and sound. Moreover, prior experiences have lasting impacts on sensitivity and response to cues; plants, in essence, have memory. Nor are their senses limited to the processes of an individual plant: plants eavesdrop on the cues and behaviors of neighbors and—for example, through flowers and fruits—exchange information with other types of organisms. Far from inanimate organisms limited by their stationary existence, plants, this book makes unquestionably clear, are in constant and lively discourse.

The Language of Plants

Science, Philosophy, Literature

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Author: Monica Gagliano,John C. Ryan,Patrícia Vieira

Publisher: U of Minnesota Press

ISBN: 1452954127

Category: Science

Page: 352

View: 1790

The eighteenth-century naturalist Erasmus Darwin (grandfather of Charles) argued that plants are animate, living beings and attributed them sensation, movement, and a certain degree of mental activity, emphasizing the continuity between humankind and plant existence. Two centuries later, the understanding of plants as active and communicative organisms has reemerged in such diverse fields as plant neurobiology, philosophical posthumanism, and ecocriticism. The Language of Plants brings together groundbreaking essays from across the disciplines to foster a dialogue between the biological sciences and the humanities and to reconsider our relation to the vegetal world in new ethical and political terms. Viewing plants as sophisticated information-processing organisms with complex communication strategies (they can sense and respond to environmental cues and play an active role in their own survival and reproduction through chemical languages) radically transforms our notion of plants as unresponsive beings, ready to be instrumentally appropriated. By providing multifaceted understandings of plants, informed by the latest developments in evolutionary ecology, the philosophy of biology, and ecocritical theory, The Language of Plants promotes the freedom of imagination necessary for a new ecological awareness and more sustainable interactions with diverse life forms. Contributors: Joni Adamson, Arizona State U; Nancy E. Baker, Sarah Lawrence College; Karen L. F. Houle, U of Guelph; Luce Irigaray, Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique, Paris; Erin James, U of Idaho; Richard Karban, U of California at Davis; André Kessler, Cornell U; Isabel Kranz, U of Vienna; Michael Marder, U of the Basque Country (UPV-EHU); Timothy Morton, Rice U; Christian Nansen, U of California at Davis; Robert A. Raguso, Cornell U; Catriona Sandilands, York U.

Nature Guide to the Northern Forest

Exploring the Ecology of the Forests of New York, New Hampshire, Vermont, and Maine

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Author: Peter J. Marchand

Publisher: Appalachian Mountain Club

ISBN: 9781934028421

Category: Nature

Page: 173

View: 6442

"Part field guide, part natural history narrative, this full-color guide from the Appalachian Mountain Club will help you identify and understand the complex influences that shape the flora and fauna of northern New York, New Hampshire, Vermont, and Maine."-back cover.

The Secret Life of Plants

A Fascinating Account of the Physical, Emotional, and Spiritual Relations Between Plants and Man

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Author: Peter Tompkins,Christopher Bird

Publisher: HarperCollins

ISBN: 006287442X

Category: Nature

Page: 416

View: 6840

The world of plants and its relation to mankind as revealed by the latest scientific discoveries. "Plenty of hard facts and astounding scientific and practical lore."--Newsweek

The Lost Language of Plants

The Ecological Importance of Plant Medicines to Life on Earth

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Author: Stephen Harrod Buhner

Publisher: Chelsea Green Publishing

ISBN: 1890132888

Category: Medical

Page: 325

View: 1583

This could be the most important book you will read this year. Well-known author, teacher, lecturer, and herbalist Stephen Harrod Buhner has produced a book that is certain to generate controversy. It consists of three parts: 1. A critique of technological medicine, and especially the dangers to the environment posed by pharmaceuticals and other synthetic substances that people use in connection with health care and personal body care. 2. A new look at Gaia Theory, including an explanation that plants are the original chemistries of Gaia and those phytochemistries are the fundamental communications network for the Earth's ecosystems. 3. Extensive documentation of how plants communicate their healing qualities to humans and other animals. Western culture has obliterated most people's capacity to perceive these messages, but this book also contains valuable information on how we can restore our faculties of perception.

On Intelligence

How a New Understanding of the Brain Will Lead to the Creation of Truly Intelligent Machines

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Author: Jeff Hawkins,Sandra Blakeslee

Publisher: Macmillan

ISBN: 9781429900454

Category: Computers

Page: 272

View: 7794

From the inventor of the PalmPilot comes a new and compelling theory of intelligence, brain function, and the future of intelligent machines Jeff Hawkins, the man who created the PalmPilot, Treo smart phone, and other handheld devices, has reshaped our relationship to computers. Now he stands ready to revolutionize both neuroscience and computing in one stroke, with a new understanding of intelligence itself. Hawkins develops a powerful theory of how the human brain works, explaining why computers are not intelligent and how, based on this new theory, we can finally build intelligent machines. The brain is not a computer, but a memory system that stores experiences in a way that reflects the true structure of the world, remembering sequences of events and their nested relationships and making predictions based on those memories. It is this memory-prediction system that forms the basis of intelligence, perception, creativity, and even consciousness. In an engaging style that will captivate audiences from the merely curious to the professional scientist, Hawkins shows how a clear understanding of how the brain works will make it possible for us to build intelligent machines, in silicon, that will exceed our human ability in surprising ways. Written with acclaimed science writer Sandra Blakeslee, On Intelligence promises to completely transfigure the possibilities of the technology age. It is a landmark book in its scope and clarity.

The Origins of Creativity

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Author: Edward O. Wilson

Publisher: Liveright Publishing

ISBN: 1631493191

Category: Science

Page: 256

View: 8692

An eloquent exploration of creativity, The Origins of Creativity grapples with the question of how this uniquely human expression—so central to our identity as individuals and, collectively, as a species—came about and how it has manifested itself throughout the history of our species. In this profound and lyrical book, one of our most celebrated biologists offers a sweeping examination of the relationship between the humanities and the sciences: what they offer to each other, how they can be united, and where they still fall short. Both endeavours, Edward O. Wilson reveals, have their roots in human creativity—the defining trait of our species. Reflecting on the deepest origins of language, storytelling, and art, Wilson demonstrates how creativity began not ten thousand years ago, as we have long assumed, but over one hundred thousand years ago in the Paleolithic age. Chronicling this evolution of creativity from primate ancestors to humans, The Origins of Creativity shows how the humanities, spurred on by the invention of language, have played a largely unexamined role in defining our species. And in doing so, Wilson explores what we can learn about human nature from a surprising range of creative endeavors—the instinct to create gardens, the use of metaphors and irony in speech, and the power of music and song. Our achievements in science and the humanities, Wilson notes, make us uniquely advanced as a species, but also give us the potential to be supremely dangerous, most worryingly in our abuse of the planet. The humanities in particular suffer from a kind of anthropomorphism, encumbered by a belief that we are the only species among millions that seem to matter, yet Wilson optimistically reveals how researchers will have to address this parlous situation by pushing further into the realm of science, especially fields such as evolutionary biology, neuroscience, and anthropology. With eloquence and humanity, Wilson calls for a transformational "Third Enlightenment," in which the blending of these endeavors will give us a deeper understanding of the human condition and our crucial relationship with the natural world.

Botany For Dummies

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Author: Rene Fester Kratz

Publisher: John Wiley & Sons

ISBN: 1118110846

Category: Science

Page: 384

View: 7933

The easy way to score your highest in botany Employment of biological scientists is projected to grow 21% over the next decade, much faster than the average for all occupations, as biotechnological research and development continues to drive job growth. Botany For Dummies gives you a thorough, easy-to-follow overview of the fundamentals of botany, helping you to improve your grades, supplement your learning, or review before a test. Covers evolution by natural selection Offers plain-English explanations of the structure and function of plants Includes plant identification and botanical phenomenon Tracking a typical course in botany, this hands-on, friendly guide is your ticket to acing this required course for your major in biology, microbiology, zoology, or elementary education.

How Plants Work

The Science Behind the Amazing Things Plants Do

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Author: Linda Chalker-Scott

Publisher: Timber Press

ISBN: 1604696907

Category: Science

Page: 236

View: 6770

The more you know, the better you grow! Plants are capable of interesting and unexpected things. Why do container plants wilt when they’ve been regularly watered? Why did the hydrangea that thrived last year never bloom this year? Why do slugs wipe out the vegetable garden instead of eating the weeds? Plant physiology—the study of how living things function—can solve these and most other problems gardeners regularly encounter. In How Plants Work, horticulture expert and contributor to the popular blog The Garden Professors, Linda Chalker-Scott brings the stranger-than-fiction science of the plant world to vivid life. She uncovers the mysteries of how and why plants do the things they do, and arms the home gardener with fascinating knowledge that will change the way they garden.

The Long, Long Life of Trees

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Author: Fiona Stafford

Publisher: Yale University Press

ISBN: 0300207336

Category:

Page: 296

View: 6933

A lyrical tribute to the diversity of trees, their physical beauty, their special characteristics and uses, and their ever-evolving meanings Since the beginnings of history trees have served humankind in countless useful ways, but our relationship with trees has many dimensions beyond mere practicality. Trees are so entwined with human experience that diverse species have inspired their own stories, myths, songs, poems, paintings, and spiritual meanings. Some have achieved status as religious, cultural, or national symbols. In this beautifully illustrated volume Fiona Stafford offers intimate, detailed explorations of seventeen common trees, from ash and apple to pine, oak, cypress, and willow. The author also pays homage to particular trees, such as the fabled Ankerwyke Yew, under which Henry VIII courted Anne Boleyn, and the spectacular cherry trees of Washington, D.C. Stafford discusses practical uses of wood past and present, tree diseases and environmental threats, and trees' potential contributions toward slowing global climate change. Brimming with unusual topics and intriguing facts, this book celebrates trees and their long, long lives as our inspiring and beloved natural companions.

The Forest Unseen

A Year's Watch in Nature

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Author: David George Haskell

Publisher: Penguin Group USA

ISBN: 0143122940

Category: Nature

Page: 270

View: 1913

Reveals what can be understood about the natural world through the author's year-long observation of a one-square-meter patch of old-growth Tennessee forest, explaining the scientific ties binding all life and how the ecosystem has cycled for millions of years. 25,000 first printing.