Stressed Plants Tell Us About It
When they have a headache or perhaps a toothache many people take an aspirin. It turns out that many plants do almost the same thing when they are under stress.
The plants that do so, however, make their own form of aspirin called methyl salicylate. This phenomenon has been observed in the laboratory, but never in nature until now. Researchers studying air pollution set up their instruments near a California walnut grove. They wanted to see what gases the plants might be emitting. Methyl salicylate was among the gases they detected. Researchers believe that the gas might have some immune function for the plants. It might also warn surrounding plants of a threat. This finding may help farmers and others detect when plants are being stressed by lack of water, insects or disease. Until this finding, those caring for plants could only tell when a plant was stressed once the plant began to show visible signs of stress. With this information, those who tend plants will be able to apply pesticides, for example, in a more timely manner.
God gave us a perfect world where there was no need for medicines. But He knew we would sin and bring death and sickness upon the creation. So, being a loving God, He also gave us medicines to discover and ease our suffering.