RESEARCHERS from Exeter University claim to have found that plants can communicate with one another.

To find out how plants talk, the researchers modified a cabbage gene which triggers the production of a gas emitted when a plant's surface is cut or pierced.

By adding a protein called 'luciferase' to the plants' DNA, their emissions could be monitored on camera. One cabbage plant had a leaf cut off with scissors and started emitting a gas which 'told' nearby plants there may be trouble ahead.

Two nearby cabbage plants, which had not been touched, received the message they should protect themselves, which they did by producing toxic chemicals on the leaves to fend off predators such as caterpillars.