What a Plant Knows


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A captivating journey into the inner lives of plants – from the colours they see to the schedules they keep

About the Author

Dr Daniel Chamovitz is Director of the Manna Centre for Plant Biosciences at Tel Aviv University in Israel. His career has been marked by ground-breaking discoveries in plant biology, with his research published in the leading journals. This is his first book.


'A fascinating book that explores accessibly the evidence that plants share more properties with animals than most people appreciate. It may come as a relief to vegetarians to learn that plants do not feel pain or suffer, in the human sense, when harvested. Nevertheless, after reading What a Plant Knows, we wanted to apologize to our daffodils for the times when our shadows have shielded them from the Sun.' John and Mary Gribbin, authors of The Flower Hunters 'Chamovitz walks the Homo sapien reader right into the shoes - or I should say roots - of the plant world. After reading this book you will never again walk innocently past a plant or reach insensitively for a leaf. You will marvel and be haunted by a plant's sensory attributes and the shared genes between the plant and animal kingdoms.' Elisabeth Tova Bailey, author of The Sound of a Wild Snail Eating 'What a Plant Knows is lively, eloquent, scientifically accurate, and easy-to-read - I commend this engaging text to all who wonder about life on Earth, and seek a compelling introduction to the lives of plants revealed through centuries of careful scientific experimentation.' Professor Stephen D. Hopper, Director, Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew 'Just as his groundbreaking research uncovered connections between the plant and animal kingdoms, Daniel Chamovitz's insights in What a Plant Knows transcend the world of plants. You'll see plants in a new light after reading this book.' Gloria Coruzzi, Professor of Biology, New York University 'Just like us, a plant that aspires to win the rat race must exploit its environment. Even a rhododendron knows when you're savaging its neighbour with the pruning shears. With deftness and clarity, Chamovitz introduces plants' equivalents of our senses, plus fl oral forms of memory and orientation. When you realize how much plants know, you may think twice before you bite them!' Hannah Holmes, author of Suburban Safari

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