All right...lets talk about Crop Circles. I picked up a book today off a discount table on Crop Circles by Steve and Karen Alexander. Its one of those coffee table books of magnificent pictures; and their approach is not to try to figure out how, or why or if they are hoaxes, but rather just to talk about the shapes themselves...the patterns, the mathematics and physics underlying the crop circles and the beauty. Its a great book! It piqued my interest - or rather it piqued it further, as I have always been fascinated by the Crop Circle phenomena.
So I went digging for more information...oh man did I find some!
You remember the news story in 1991 about 2 gentlemen that said they were creating all the crop circles? Doug Bower and Dave Chorley stated that they had started the phenomenon in 1978 by making actual circles on crops with the use of simple tools. That debunking has stuck to this day, except for the fact that what they claim they did doesn't square with the way actual crop circles look. They claimed to use boards to stamp down the wheat or the corn or whatever crop the circle is in, and string to get straight lines. They were asked for a demonstration, and failed miserably...in actual crop circles, the crops are not broken down but bent, in swirled patterns, and are perfectly symmetrical or laid out. What they produce was smashed and broken stalks, asymmetrical ragged shapes and wobbly broken lines. They COULDN'T match what actual crop circles looked like. Later, one of them admitted that they were lying and did not actually do what they had said they had done. The hoax was a hoax - but that's not what the world remembers. So any time you try to talk about crop circles, they get brought up as "proof"that crop circles have been debunked.
Crop circles are not a modern phenomenon and may have been occurring for hundreds to thousands of years or longer. They exist in the centuries-old folklore of South Africa and China, and are in Native American Indian legends. The first written account of a crop circle is from August 8, 1590 and is found in "The Natural History of Stafford-Shire", published in 1686. There are also other references from England's 15th century that suggest crop circle formations. In John Aubrey's "Natural History", a 1633 school teacher seen green circles made by the spirits in the grass. Another early historical record of a crop circle from 1678, is the "Mowing Devil" case, where a farmer's field was believed to have been visited by a devilish entity that trampled the crops down in a circle. There is a wood engraving of this event. In 1686, a book entitled "A Natural History of Staffordshire", made reference to rings, circles and other shapes found in grassy fields.
It the past 25 years, more than 10,000 crop circle formations have been found in more than 29 countries: England, United States, Canada, Germany, Australia, The Netherlands, Hungary, Japan, Wales, France, Scotland, Switzerland, Czech Republic, Austria, Italy, New Zealand, Russia, Finland, Israel, Poland, Brazil, Mexico, India, Sweden, Ireland, Yugoslavia, China, Argentina, Croatia, Denmark, Peru, Romania, Siberia, Slovakia, Spain, Turkey, Afghanistan, Bulgaria, Chile, Egypt, Isle-of-Man, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malaysia, Nigeria, Norway, Sardinia, Tasmania, Ukraine, Uruguay, etc. Most of the elaborate crop circles found, are found around England's ancient and sacred site areas (Stonehenge, the earth mound of Silbury Hill, Avebury, Cheesefoot Head, etc.). Southern England is where around 90% of the elaborate crop circle formations and designs are found. A majority of the world's crop circles - 40% - are within a 40 mile radius of Stonehenge. They seem to be uniformly laid out to line up with magnetic and electromagnetic lines on earth, which Stonehenge, Avebury, the Uffington Horse and dozens of other neolithic sites were all built near or on. Our ancestors knew something that science later caught up with there.
In real crop circle formations the stems are not broken but bent at 90° angles about an inch off the ground, at the plant's first node. The plants are subjected to a short and intense burst of heat or energy that softens the stems or stalks allowing them to be folded over onto the ground at a 90° angle. When the stems or stalks reharden into their new position, the plants and crop are not damaged and continue to grow. This is the method used to identify a real crop circle formation (agriglyph). The canola oil plant has a structure like celery. If the stalk is bent more than about 45°, the stalk will break. When crop circles are found in canola fields, the stalks are bent 90°. Research and laboratory tests suggest that microwave or ultrasound may be the only method capable of producing this effect, but plant biologists are still baffled by this phenomenon.When a man-made crop circle is found, the grain stalks are broken, the formations are usually jagged and the formations do not have any symmetry. Because of the disinformation spread by the media, most people think that all crop circles have been produced by pranksters with a plank, a garden roller, ladders, ropes and measuring tools. The disinformation and non-media coverage of crop circle formations actually protects the farmers and their harvest from damage caused by researchers and the curious from trampling their crop circle grains, harvest and lands.
In the field of Crop Circle Plant Analysis and Research (radioactivity measurements, spectrographic analysis, magnetometer readings, microscopic inspection, cellular plant experiments, weighing, photographing, etc.): High-pressure infrasound is capable of boiling water inside plant stems in one nanosecond, causing the water to steam, and leaving tiny blowholes in the plants’ nodes. Research and laboratory tests prove that infrasound (less than 20 Hz) is capable of producing such an effect. This process creates surface charring along the stems. Microwave radiation (high frequency electromagnetic waves) is also believed to be how the stalks are bent and the plant's nodes are swollen. The top picture here are regular nodes from a field with a crop circle...the bottom picture shows the bent, burned nodes on the stalks from inside the circle.
Farmers have reported that when they find a new crop circle, they have seen steam rising into the air from within the design. Crop circles also show the possible existence of ultrasound also. Several people have reported hearing a trilling sound prior to witnessing crop circles forming. They also report a total stillness in the air (no wind) and total quiet. This trilling sound was captured on magnetic tape and analyzed at NASA's Jet Propulsion Lab as being mechanical in nature with a frequency of 5.2kHz.
Biophysical evidence shows the plant's nodes and stems are drastically extended, seed embryos are altered, and their is the existence of expulsion cavities, as if they have been heated from the inside. There is also a reorganization of the plant’s crystalline structure. A malt fragrance can also be smelled after cutting open a stem from a freshly made crop circle, which means that the plant has been cooked from the inside, but the crop remains unharmed.
Exhaustive lab analysis into hundreds of 1991-1995 crop circles shows physical and biophysical changes to the plants inside a crop circle. There are also alterations in the germination, development of seed embryos, and alterations in the plant's stem node length and circumference (up to 200% increase in one case). In the picture here, there has been ten days of growth since the crop circle appeared. The far right stalks came from the center of the circle. The smaller ones in the middle came from the edge of the circle, and the ones on the left are taken from outside the crop circle. The grains from crop circle plants can grow 40%-50% larger have a stronger and larger root system with larger grains, than the grains from the crop surrounding the crop circle. Alternatively, some crop circle plants produce seeds that are smaller than normal plants. The reason for the differences in the plants may be water supply available when the formation was made, the age of the plant when the event occurs or the type of plant. The internal structure of the plants is altered at the cellular level. The cell pit walls of the plants are fractured and expanded. In grain crops, there are nodes close to the ground that help the plant grow vertically. Crop circle plants have expanded, elongated or "blown nodes" nodes. The plants with the largest node expansion are found in the center of a crop circle.
And here's where I have been going with this...they caught one forming on video. And it ain't man made. And this is NOT a hoax. It was checked by digital effects experts and they stated that there was no evidence of digital tampering or faking in the film. It was real - and as they went on to say, the crop circle that formed in the video was photographed the following morning, and was real. Here is the video - so watch. You get to see an actual crop circle being formed.
And here is the photograph of the crop circle that was formed in the video above.
So far, there is no consensus of what causes them, and theories range from natural phenomena to aliens from outer space. There is plenty of proof that they are real, in the sense of not being created by humans as a hoax. They are deeply compelling, amazingly varied and very numerous. Maybe someday the how and why will be uncovered...
but the power and eerie beauty of them is perhaps, reason enough for them to be here.