Today’s Video of the Day from the American Chemical Society reveals that the smell of fresh cut grass may actually be a strategy used to warn to other plants that danger is approaching.
The methods that plants use to communicate with each other are very complex. While this system is not entirely understood, it is known to involve a number of organic volatile compounds that have very strong odors.
When plants are damaged, they release large amounts of molecules called green leaf volatiles (GLVs), including aldehydes that produce the distinctive smell of a freshly mowed lawn.
Scientists have found evidence that these chemicals are released as distress signals to neighboring plants, giving them the chance to to prepare their chemical defenses.
Video Credit: American Chemical Society