Mushrooms Can Speak To Each Other in Sentences “Up to 50 Words,” Researcher Says

Mushrooms are known to be a highly clever plant species. According to new research, they may have developed a language to communicate with one another.

According to The Guardian, a new study released last week in Royal Society Open Science indicates mushrooms communicate with one other using an electrical language that has an obvious resemblance to human speech patterns.

Fungi send electrical impulses through long, subterranean filamentous structures called hyphae (the interconnecting threads that make up mycelium), similar to how nerve cells convey information in humans, according to previous study.

Previous research shows that when the hyphae of wood-eating fungi come into contact with wooden blocks, the firing rate of these mushroom impulses increases, implying that fungi use this electrical “language” to communicate information about food or injury with other mushrooms on the same mycelium chain, or with hyphae-connected partners, such as trees.



Do these electrical activity trains, on the other hand, have anything in common with human language? Yes, according to mathematical analysis. How, though? Prof Andrew Adamatzky of the University of the West of England’s unconventional computing laboratory in Bristol looked into the patterns of electrical spikes produced by four fungal species: Enoki, split gill, ghost, and caterpillar fungi.

He conducted this analysis by inserting tiny electrodes into substrates colonized by the mushrooms’ mycelium.

“We do not know if there is a direct relationship between spiking patterns in fungi and human speech. Possibly not,” Adamatzky said to the Guardian. “On the other hand, there are many similarities in information processing in living substrates of different classes, families and species. I was just curious to compare.”

Do these electrical activity trains, on the other hand, have anything in common with human language? Yes, according to mathematical analysis. How, though? Prof Andrew Adamatzky of the University of the West of England’s unconventional computing laboratory in Bristol looked into the patterns of electrical spikes produced by four fungal species: Enoki, split gill, ghost, and caterpillar fungi.

“There is also another option – they are saying nothing,” he said. “Propagating mycelium tips are electrically charged, and, therefore, when the charged tips pass in a pair of differential electrodes, a spike in the potential difference is recorded.”