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Spiritual Messages From the Garden: Plant Intelligence

Studies exist on plant intelligence and can be regarded with a sense of humor or skepticism. Yet, intelligence is the ability to take information from various sources, synthesize that information and react in a way that demonstrates understanding. Plants are extremely adept at this process. Consider a bean plant and how it will react to conditions in the environment. The plant will send specific signals via fungi and root chemicals into the soil when other bean plants are growing nearby. Those signals transform available nitrogen into a resource used only by bean plants to provide optimum nutrient absorption. A garden is a vast network of plants that are affected by environmental conditions and share information organically to influence the growth and nutrition of plants around them. As part of the vast garden of humanity, we can find intelligent ways to share our faith organically with those around us. A quote attributed to St. Francis reminds us of this practice. “Preach the gospel at all times, and if necessary, use words.” Be like plants in your garden and influence the environment around you through daily life and actions.