As has been said, ?No man is an island unto himself?, plants and trees, like us humans, need friends and acquaintances. We make friends with those men and women whom we would like to meet and discuss things with. It is easier to maintain a friendship with those who live nearby, as we could meet them often whereas those who are far can be contacted but not so often, despite the communication revolution facilitating talking to one'sfriends in no time.
Friends make us happy and life seems easier as we can laugh and unburden ourselves to them. The benefits of living and working together are many and this is what not only humans, but animals, insects and even plants, know. Animal, like the monkeys know how to obey their boss, who offers them protection and the same is true with wolves those leader ensures that discipline is maintained in the pack. When the boss or the ?alpha male? as humans call this boss, becomes old, a brief power struggle ensues to choose a leader from the pack. Even among insects, we have seen that ants, bees and termites have a social structure with the queen ant or bee performing the main role.
In the same manner as humans, plants breathe, use food, grow and reproduce, showing that they too live. Living means living not by oneself but with others and with their help. Because plants cannot talk and cannot move like us, we feel they do not express themselves. But this is not so. A gardener who tends to the plants knows what a plant wants. A wilted plant means it is thirsty; withering or discolouration signifies lack of nutrition.
Not only plants, even trees make friends. They don'tjust talk in whispers when the wind blows over them; they have a subtle and sophisticated language of their own?a language, to which animals such as butterflies, bees, birds and bats have been responding over millennia. This is the language to which plants use to recruit security guards and also to grant them leave when they want to be ?undefended? for a while. The same language is used to hire couriers and travel agents, to reward friends and to punish foes. This is the language plants use to compete and even wage a ruthless war.
Though this slim volume touches only the fringe of the communication system that plants employ to make friends, it can nevertheless serve as a great incentive to the readers who wish to explore further and read more books on the subject as it is so interesting. It really is enthralling to learn something about the language the plant kingdom employs to be sociable.
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