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The most spoken language in the world is the one plants use to talk to each other

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As all fans of great musicals know, plants can speak.

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And even sing.

Scientists however, have determined that the way they communicate with one another is the most 'spoken' language on the planet.

Researchers at the Netherlands Institute of Ecology (NIOO-KNAW) have found that bacteria and funghi are communicating with one another using fragrances.

The most common type of fragrance used by the microorganisms to communicate are known as 'terpenes'.

Due to the high quantity of microorganisms (billions exist in every gram of soil) the researcher believe this is the most used 'language' on earth.

We actually believe that terpenes are the most popular chemical medium on our planet to communicate through.

They also found that the plants are conversing, not just all transmitting.

The terpenes fragrances were found to be responding to one another.

Leader of the research group Paolina Garbeva explained in a press release:

Serratia, a soil bacterium, can 'smell' the fragrant terpenes produced by Fusarium, a plant pathogenic fungus. It responds by becoming motile and producing a terpene of its own.

This was established through monitoring which genes in the plants were 'switched on' by the bacteria produced, and which proteins and fragrances the plant was 'responding' with.

Garbeva elaborated on the extent of the language.

We have known for some time that plants and insects use terpenes to communicate with each other. But we've only just begun to realise that it's actually much wider. There is a much larger group of 'Terpene-speakers': micro-organisms

After news that plants know when we're eating them, what if they're not speaking but screaming?

HT EurekAlert


More: Plants know if you are eating them

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