Nature

Nature

What Plants Talk About

DVD - 2013
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Hard core science is effortlessly integrated with a light-hearted look at how plants behave. Scientist J.C. Cahill reveals an astonishing landscape where plants eavesdrop on each other, talk to their allies, call in insect mercenaries and nurture their young. It is a world of pulsing activity, where plants communicate, co-operate and, sometimes, wage all-out war.
Publisher: [United States] : PBS Distribution, [2013]
ISBN: 9781608838929
Branch Call Number: 580 NAT 2013 23
Characteristics: 1 videodisc (60 min.) : sd., col. ; 4 3/4 in

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CdnErin
Jan 24, 2016

Despite being an avid gardener, I wouldn't have thought that a documentary about plants "behaviour" would be anywhere near as fascinating as this is.
Through time-lapse photography sped up to become video footage, it shows that plants really do think and behave a certain way, and that it isn't accidental. It also discusses their studies of what's going on underground, since that's the part of the plant we can't easily see -- it isn't just random roots growing, there is a thought process to it. And, very interesting to learn that plants have relationships -- that there are mother/daughter relationships beyond simply being offshoots, and that being a sibling plant can give a plant a better chance at survival as opposed to a random unrelated seedling!
The best shot of this was of a predatory vine that, when found outdoors, it seemed to prefer one host plant over another ... it showed this little seedling, that MUST find a host within the first few days of life or it will die, swinging around in an ever-widening circle (like a cowboy with a lasso) as it "sniffed" the two plants equal distances away from it, until it settled on its preferred tomato plant. (**Sidenote - they don't mention it in the show, but watch the tomato plant "backing away" every time the vine comes around in its direction! It goes to show that it isn't just the vine that is thinking something... it *knows* that vine is going to hurt it!)

It's also really cool that this documentary focuses on a University of Alberta professor and his studies of plant behaviour. I didn't expect that an American documentary would seek out a Canadian expert, let alone have him be the star of the show.
Don't just take my word for it, watch this program, you'll have a new appreciation for plants!

d2013 Jan 30, 2015

Plants have secret lives of their own. Educational yet entertaining. I enjoyed it!

e
eliasmerkins
Jul 15, 2014

A very interesting documentary about the way plants behave. After watching this movie my knowledge and perception of plants has positively evolved. A must see for the whole family.

k
Keogh
Jan 11, 2014

As usual, PBS does fine work in the documentary field. This explores the concept of plant communication in a multitude of ways and gives the viewer an appreciation for the intricate complexity of life as a plant. It's different, but it works well.

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CdnErin
Jan 24, 2016

CdnErin thinks this title is suitable for 5 years and over

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