Plants can’t talk but they do communicate with the world around them. This half-day workshop looks at plant-plant, plant-insect and plant-human interactions. We’ll see how plants help each other using chemical signals but also chemically protect the area they’re growing in from encroaching neighbours. And how they use chemical compounds to attract the right sort of insects for pollination (usually) but also to protect themselves from insects which might view them as a tasty snack. Finally, we’ll look at some plants we chose to chemically promote or deter based on the value we attach to their colours or scents or the other uses we can make of them.
Dr Gwenda Kyd is a chemist, writer and public-speaker. She has studied medicinal and other uses of plants and these studies have led to the publication of two books (so far): Molecules, Medicines and Mischief, based on a Trail around the Cambridge Botanic Garden and The Plants of Dr Bach.