Plant roots below ground are partially stimulated in the direction they travel by available water. They are capable of seeking moisture and growing in its direction. Plant roots will also alter their course of direction to avoid obstacles.54...Even Darwin, over a century ago, said that plants acquire and display the power of movement only when it is of some advantage to them. He stated, "It is hardly an exaggeration to say that the tip of the radical (the root) thus endowed, and having the power of directing the movements of the adjoining parts, acts like the brain of one of the lower animals.".55
Some plants have tendrils that make wide sweeping movements in order to find supporting structures upon which they can start twining. The Cyclanthera pedata has tendrils which will begin to curve around a support within 20 seconds of initial contact and make their first complete coil around the support in four minutes.56...The Mimosa pudica will move one of its leaflets if lightly touched, and with increasing disturbance will fold all of the feathers within each of its leaflets seemingly as a protective response.57...The Silver linden and wood sorrel group their leaves in bright sunlight in order to avoid scorching. Grass leaves open and close to avoid excessive transpiration in arid conditions.58
Plants have been described as having a "primitive neuroid system." Some plants have been detected to have electrical potentials, with visually reported pulses that greatly resemble those of vertebrate peripheral nerves.59
One of the ways that intelligence manifests itself is by endowing all organisms with the freedom of choosing among two or more alternatives. This freedom of choice is very limited in unicellular organisms and plants, but broadens tremendously as one climbs the evolutionary scale. Nevertheless, choice-making is a fundamental property of all life forms.60
According to J.Z. Young, the process of living involves the utilization of whatever information is available to make choices between alternatives, with the ultimate goal of achieving the continuation of life. Every organism contains DNA which has programmed instructions that influence whatever choices an organism makes. Every cell within every organism must continuously make choices, from moment to moment, relating to those operations that are required to meet each new challenging situation.61...The DNA is continuously giving instructions to each individual cell, concerning how to select the appropriate chemical action to meet each eventuality that is likely to cause the cell to disintegrate.62
Life continues because each cell, as well as each organism, makes repeated choices among previously established sets of possible alternative actions.63...All living things do act in a directed way under the influence of a controlling mechanism. Cellular as well as organismic behavior is regulated by the record stored in their DNA, which has accumulated over an extremely long period of time. Prior selections made throughout this long past continue to influence every organism during its entire life span.64...More complex organisms are faced with many more choices.
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