Decades of research document plants’ impressive abilities: they communicate with one another, manipulate other species, and move in sophisticated ways. Lesser known, however, is the new evidence that plants may actually be sentient. Although plants may not have brains, their microscopic commerce exposes a system not unlike the neuronal networks running through our own bodies. They can learn and remember, possessing an intelligence that allows them to behave in adaptive, flexible, anticipatory, and goal-directed ways.
A leading figure in the philosophy of plant signaling and behavior, Paco Calvo offers an entirely new perspective on plant biology. In Planta Sapiens, he shows for the first time how wecan use tools developed in animal cognition studies in a quest to deeply understand plant intelligence. He illuminates how plants inspire technological advancements: from robotics and AI to tackling the ecological crisis. Most importantly, he demonstrates that plants are neither objects nor resources; they are agents in themselves, and for themselves.