Maybe we should check up on our plants, folks. Apparently, they might be trying to tell us something. A recent study confirms that these little fellas belt out high-pitched clicks when troubled. Yes, they're just like us.
According to a report published in the peer-reviewed journal, Cell, plants can also be stressed out. Theirs, however, are expressed through ultrasonic noises that evade our human ears. These come about when they're cut or thirsty. Plants also make the same sound when they have an infection.
The volume of these sounds is roughly on the level of a casual human conversation. "Humans usually hear to 16 kilohertz. These sounds are mostly between 40 and 80 kilohertz," Lilach Hadany, senior author on the study and an evolutionary biologist and theoretician at Tel Aviv University, said in an interview with Insider.
But that doesn't mean we can listen to their screeches. We're going to have to need an ultrasonic mic to hear for ourselves. Plants don't do this as a physical reaction though. It's more of an interesting passive process called "cavitation." Scientists say these sounds happen when plants pop air bubbles in their circulation system. Hence, the vibrations. This, unfortunately, doesn't mean that they have feelings or can feel actual pain.
"We assume that in nature the sounds emitted by plants are detected by creatures nearby, such as bats, rodents, various insects, and possibly also other plants," Hadany added. The next step for scientists is to understand if plants can communicate with each other through these noises. That, we'll have to wait and see.
Hey, at least we have something (or someone) to scream with from time to time.
This story originally appeared on Esquiremag.ph. Minor edits have been made by the Candymag.com editors.