Plants are aware of their own bodies and of sunlight through chemical processes. When they get damaged, their ongoing processes are interrupted, and they produce more toxins.<quoted text>
How are the plants aware enough to compete?
Would you guess that it's autonomic?
How could a plant understand that it's being eaten?
Why haven't plants that are perfect food "evolved" with toxins to prevent eing eaten? ie; potato, tomato, lettuce, basil, parsley, onion, etc,etc...
You've said before that evorution is brought on by necessity, adaptation. Are you now saying that a plant knows what's necessary for survival? A plant is cognisant?
Plants have immune systems that keep them from being turned into fungus, bacteria and food. These are largely ambient poisons in the plant. When plants do not have optimal conditions, they get invaded by pathogens.
The domestic plants that you mentioned have been shaped by humans over the generations to largely detoxify them - at least, to us. Because they're less able to compete with other plants, we have to take care of them and give them optimal conditions. That's called "weeding," fertilizer and pesticides. Humans take care of them so they can devote their energy resources to producing foods for us - we have selected them for food production at the expense of defense. It's human induced plant evolution.
Plants are not sentient like you and I are, but they react when damaged and they can communicate damage to other plants. When you cut garlic, it primes all the garlic around it to producing more garlic flavor, which is its toxin. It's the same with trees. When one gets invaded by an insect, say, it sends out chemicals that other trees pick up on - and all of them will produce more toxins in defense against the attacking insect.
Marigolds are pretty cool. They actually send out chemicals that attract wasps. So when a caterpillar is eating it, the marigold calls out to wasps "come here" as wasps parasitize caterpillars.
You don't believe me, look it up. Here's a simple explanation for you, and some examples in wikipedia: