Does Music Affect Plant Growth
Music And Plants – How Do Plants Respond To Music?
The idea that plants respond to music will appear to be absurd to some skeptic people. But, scientific studies have proved that plants respond to music and music help plants to grow better. Plants are living things and they respond to various stimuli in the surroundings. Music acts as stimuli and can create a positive or negative response in plants. Many argue that plants do not have ears and hence the theory that plant growth is affected by music is skeptical. However, music or sound travel through air and water as waves and these waves can create vibrations which can be felt by the plants.
Studies to Support Relation between Plant Growth and Music
Indian plant physiologist Sir Jagadish Chandra Bose studied the effect of various environmental stimuli on plants. He found that plants respond to external factors such as light, heat cold, noise, touch, etc. He hypothesised that plants are able to feel pain and affection. He also invented the tool to measure plant growth called Crescograph. Dorothy Retallack from Colorado did controlled greenhouse experiments using different genres of music and plant varieties and has found that plants grow towards the radio playing soothing music like classical and jazz and the plants moved away from the radio playing rock music. Another Indian botanist T.C Singh found that the harvest of the rice plants improved by 25-60% after the plants were exposed to Indian classical music. These studies show that sound waves which are in harmonic form can improve growth, flowering, fruiting and seed production in plants.
How Are Plants Influenced By Music?
Different genre of music has different sound frequencies and the vibrations and pressure caused on plants by the music vary depending on the type of music played. Louder music can have a detrimental effect on plants just like they have a bad effect on our hearing ability. The musical waves can influence the various functions and activities of the plants like:
- Opening and closing of stomata- The opening and closing of stomata control the intake of carbon dioxide needed for photosynthesis and oxygen needed for growth. Music keeps the stomata to remain open and helps in increased food production for the plant and better growth.
- The ascent of sap- Ascent of sap is vital in reaching the plant nutrients to different parts of the plant and for better growth. The electrical and mechanical vibrations caused by music can increase the ascent of sap and thereby provide a better supply of nutrients and cell growth.
- Gene activation- It has been found that music with a specific frequency can activate the genes of the plant and can result in better cell growth. Music can also increase the cytoplasmic movements in the cell and can lead to better growth of the plants.
The effect of music on plant growth is not yet completely proved, but there are many vineyards using music therapy to increase the speed of grape ripening. Though skepticism still shrouds the relation between plant growth and music, there are many agricultural farms resorting to music for increased production and plant growth.