Wait, what? You must be thinking, a plant
can't be gay
, or possessed of sexual orientation
at all), because-- because-- plants are plants
!! They can't think or move or feel sexual attraction
. Right? Well as it turns out, not so right.
Firstly, it turns out that plants are a lot more volitional
in their behavior
than people have traditionally thought. This is best seen in competition
, where highly sped-up footage of competing neighbors
shows them pushing and shoving and climbing on top of each other
, each jostling with its branches and leaves to get the best vantage point keep a hold on the best soil
. At a much accelerated speed, plants look much like-- well, like animals
engaged in the same battle would. This same jousting for resources can be seen as well where competitor root systems collide and try to block or entangle each other in ways that give one competitor or the other an advantageous access to water and nutrients.
But competition isn't the only sphere where apparently volitional behavior can be seen. Plants have been observed as well displaying what in animals would be deemed affection
, and yes, even love
. In some cases, where two plants are sisters
, grown from seeds
of the same parent, they will cooperate instead of competing. Where competitor root systems entangle and seek to thwart each other, the sister plants grow in such a way as to carefully avoid such entanglement
, and instead direct their competitive efforts to other plants outside their little sphere of cooperation. Another observation has been made in communities of trees where resources can be conveyed through a common root system. When a small sapling
is damaged or takes ill, other trees in the system will sacrifice
a portion of their own sustenance
, directing it, by a collective effort, through that root system
for the resuscitation
of the injured youth. If the sapling recovers, plants around it seem to perk up with joy, and if it does not, they seem to droop with sadness.
And now, about that sexual selection. Well it is clear now that some plants can behave differently towards others based on something as animalistic as recognition of a close relative. And plants do select "partners" for other purposes. Highly sped-up imagery of the growth of certain clinging vines shows them circling around and around
" the plants near themselves to decide which one to hitch up with and grow on. Plants, by the way, are not as senseless as we have imagined either. Just as an animal's nose
which identify molecules wafting on the wind and conveying these sensations to the brain
as smells, plants detect and react to the same sorts of things in much the same way. That is how "sister" plants identify their siblings, and how that growing vine identifies which nearby sapling is the healthiest host to support its climb towards the sunlight.
And so it ought to be no surprise that that is how a "male" plant seeking to spread its seeds identifies a "female" plant toward which to send them. Now, bear in mind, plants are frequently hermaphroditic, which both male and female parts (in fact, a flower having parts for both sexes is classed as a "perfect" flower). And many plants appear to depend on seed distribution methods which sharply limit their ability to "choose" the target of their reproductive efforts (like counting on bees
). But there are nonetheless plant species for which male
characteristics can be determined to be dominant in particular specimens, and for which some sex selection techniques are available to a plant seeking to fertilize another (such as releasing spores
just when the wind is right to take them in the direction of a desired "mate"). And there are instances where a "male" plant has been seen waiting for the winds to shift so as to send its spores in the direction of another "male" plant. But, plants being plants, where that happens, the recipient of this reproductive affection is likely to simply up and get pregnant
"I still don't believe it, give me some sources."
* Homosexual behaviour is natural in the animal and plant kingdoms.
* Professor Names 'Bisexual' Fern after Lady Gaga; links plants to gay rights
* We Are Out there including Plants and Animals
* Plant Sexuality & Political Correctness
In brief response to RedOmega, you may think that but this one time I was walking in the woods and I heard a bush with a distinctly male voice telling another: "I don't care what my parents think, I love him. We're moving to California, where we can get married." On a more serious note, it is true that "homo" is often taken to mean man, and homosexuality is tied in our thoughts to ideas of human behavior, but often so could be concepts like curiosity and aggression. If we use a perhaps less loaded term like same-sex attraction, we might come down to the realization that when we speak of sexual attraction at all, we are speaking of humans expressing their natural animalness, and not animals (or even plants) somehow behaving with humanness.