Plants and free will again

Tony Travis ajt at
Tue Aug 31 05:47:01 EST 1993

Mark Hovenden (mark_hov at wrote:
: Those of you who have read the few postings about the free will of
: plants might be interested to read the following private response I
: received from the exponent of what can only be some type of
: fanaticism.  I hope you are all enjoying this as much as I am.

I think you are being a little harsh, Mark.

I accept that plants exhibit deterministic behaviour, as you do, but I
sought to explain to Grzegorz why I think he is wrong.  One of the
areas that bionet.plants can be used for to good effect is to correct
mis-conceptions like this and present a more rational view of nature. 

: [ reply deleted]
: Now how can one argue with that?  I bow, cap in hand, and admit
: defeat!


You are right to criticise fanaticism, and I agree with you in
principle, but one of the important roles of plant biology is to
provide a rational explanation of the behaviour of plants.  This
explanation is, itself, the best defence against pseudo-science.

Dr. A.J.Travis,                       |  JANET: <ajt at>
Rowett Research Institute,            |  other: <ajt at>
Greenburn Road, Bucksburn,            |  phone: +44 (0)224 712751
Aberdeen, AB2 9SB. UK.                |    fax: +44 (0)224 715349

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