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Stefano Mancuso

Plants as “revolutionary geniuses”?

We’ve been talking about intelligence in termite mounds. Not “of” termite mounds but “in” them. From a review of The Revolutionary Genius of Plants: A New Understanding of Plant Intelligence and Behavior, by plant biologist Stefan Mancuso, To overcome the human bias toward brain-centered intelligence, Mancuso writes, one must consider that, unlike animals, plants can’t move. Being anchored in one spot required that plants evolve entirely different solutions to short- and long-term threats like predators, fire and drought. (Animals do not solve problems, notes Mancuso, they avoid them.) The plant solution is decentralization: Rather than having a brain, kidneys or other organs that would be points of vulnerability, plants are modular. Functions that would be carried out by organs in an Read More ›