Can Plants Sense Humans? Using Plants as Biosensors to Detect the Presence of Eurythmic Gestures
Author(s)de la Cal, Luis; Gloor, Peter A.; Weinbeer, Moritz
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This paper describes the preliminary results of measuring the impact of human body movements on plants. The scope of this project is to investigate if a plant perceives human activity in its vicinity. In particular, we analyze the influence of eurythmic gestures of human actors on lettuce and beans. In an eight-week experiment, we exposed rows of lettuce and beans to weekly eurythmic movements (similar to Qi Gong) of a eurythmist, while at the same time measuring changes in voltage between the roots and leaves of lettuce and beans using the plant spikerbox. We compared this experimental group of vegetables to a control group of vegetables whose voltage differential was also measured while not being exposed to eurythmy. We placed a plant spikerbox connected to lettuce or beans in the vegetable plot while the eurythmist was performing their gestures about 2 m away; a second spikerbox was connected to a control plant 20 m away. Using <i>t</i>-tests, we found a clear difference between the experimental and the control group, which was also verified with a machine learning model. In other words, the vegetables showed a noticeably different pattern in electric potentials in response to eurythmic gestures.
Multidisciplinary Digital Publishing Institute
Sensors 23 (15): 6971 (2023)
Final published version