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Regional Botany Quizzes, Trivia and Puzzles
Regional Botany Quizzes, Trivia

Regional Botany Trivia

Regional Botany Trivia Quizzes

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Quizzes about botany specific to one part of the world are located here. Look for more specific sub categories for some countries.
41 Regional Botany quizzes and 574 Regional Botany trivia questions.
Australia Australia (11 quizzes)
UK UK (5)
USA USA (18)
Garden of the Gods
  Garden of the Gods   best quiz  
Photo Quiz
 10 Qns
Few natural landscapes are so intensely evocative as that of the Mediterranean basin, whose unique flora is intimately connected to the cultures that have developed on those shores throughout history.
Easier, 10 Qns, LadyNym, Oct 28 22
LadyNym gold member
Oct 28 22
326 plays
The Okanagan Landscape
  The Okanagan Landscape   popular trivia quiz  
Photo Quiz
 10 Qns
The Okanagan Valley lies in the southern interior of British Columbia, extending about 200 km north from the U.S. border with Washington. Despite featuring a string of long lakes along its length, the region has a semi-arid climate, with flora to match.
Average, 10 Qns, reedy, Mar 08 23
reedy gold member
Mar 08 23
102 plays
Summer in Sorrento  or Missouri
  Summer in Sorrento - or Missouri!   great trivia quiz  
Photo Quiz
 10 Qns
While visiting Sorrento, Italy, in the summertime, I was amazed to see many plants that I grow in my yard back home in Missouri. See if you can identify the plants I saw from the clues given.
Average, 10 Qns, ponycargirl, Mar 11 23
ponycargirl editor
Mar 11 23
462 plays
The Flora of Greenland
  The Flora of Greenland    
Photo Quiz
 10 Qns
If you think Greenland is all icecap, you are mistaken. Here are ten of the plant species native to Greenland. See if you can give one of the common names for each plant if provided the scientific name.
Average, 10 Qns, bernie73, Aug 08 21
bernie73 gold member
Aug 08 21
132 plays
  African Flora    
Multiple Choice
 10 Qns
The Phoenix Rising's Red Crew had a stop in Africa during our Global Tour. We could not leave this continent without mentioning the plants and trees we saw on our journey.
Average, 10 Qns, jaknginger, Oct 09 22
jaknginger gold member
Oct 09 22
135 plays
  A Stroll through a Japanese Forest   great trivia quiz  
Multiple Choice
 10 Qns
In English, many trees and shrubs from the land of the rising sun have the word "Japanese" in their common name, or the species is 'japonica', again indicating that it is a Japanese plant. Here are 10 questions about these beautiful and useful plants!
Average, 10 Qns, pusdoc, Oct 05 23
pusdoc gold member
Oct 05 23
127 plays
  Genus Of European Trees    
Multiple Choice
 10 Qns
Select the correct Genus of these European trees. I've put some mythology and useful notes in too. Enjoy...
Average, 10 Qns, Osroccan, May 29 19
May 29 19
526 plays
trivia question Quick Question
A leafy stalk about 10"-18" high supports this pretty, pale yellow spring flower, which hangs downward like a bell. What is it?

From Quiz "Yellow Wildflowers of the Eastern US"

Regional Botany Trivia Questions

1. Which indigenous African fruit tree not only feeds the locals but whose oil-rich seed is used in the cosmetics industry?

From Quiz
African Flora

Answer: Shea

The shea tree (Vitellaria paradoxa) is a deciduous tree which is native to the savannah regions of Africa. The name comes from the Malinese Bambara word 'shiyiri' or 'shisu' meaning Shea tree. In Senegal, the tree is called ghariti, from which the French word karite arises. The fruit of the tree resembles a large green plum and takes months to ripen, however it is usually most productive at a time when other food is becoming harder to find. Shea caterpillars, which feed on the leaves are also eaten during the rainy season when they crawl down the trunk to bury themselves in the ground prior to forming cocoons. The extract from the shea seeds forms a butter which is a valuable source of dietary fat and is also used in local medicines and soaps. In the rest of the world, the shea butter is refined and used as an emollient in cosmetics. This question was harvested by leith90 who wonders whether shea butter would be good on toast.

2. Well known for aging Japanese and Scotch whisky, what is the common name for the 'Quercus cripula'?

From Quiz A Stroll through a Japanese Forest

Answer: Japanese mizunara oak

Like other oaks, mizunara oaks are used in framing buildings, cabinetry, and furniture but they are specifically known for their use in whisky barrels. The mizunara wood is used for aging whisky in Japan and Scotland. It is also used to grow shiitake mushrooms. Beginning in 2024, a purchase of a bottle of Japanese whisky means that it will have used water from Japan and will have gone through all steps of production in Japan as well. Those steps will include fermentation, distillation, aging and bottling. PR's jaknginger now has one more reason to visit the beautiful country of Japan.

3. The "bird of paradise" flowering plant belongs to a plant family named for a royal. Which royal personage is the source of the genus name?

From Quiz African Flora

Answer: Charlotte of Mecklenburg-Strelitz

The bird of paradise belongs to the genus Strelitzia, a name bestowed by botanist Sir Joseph Banks, who was an advisor to King George III. Princess Charlotte of Mecklenburg-Strelitz was King George III's consort. The genus Strelitzia includes five species, all native to southern Africa. In South Africa, the plant is called the crane flower, and appears on the 50-cent coin. Pollination is by sunbirds - the bird perches on the spathe, which is a large bract that envelops the flower. Without sunbirds, the plants usually require hand pollination to reproduce. The plants have been propagated widely and are common features in gardens and arboretums when the environment is conducive to their growth. They require several years' growth before they produce flowers. The plant is toxic to dogs, cats and horses leading to mild nausea and vomiting. Player pusdoc of Phoenix Rising's Red Crew has Strelitzia blooming in her yard.

4. Shiitake mushrooms can be grown on logs from many hardwoods, but which tree (related to beech and oak) is also known as the 'shii tree' for its long use in shiitake cultivation.

From Quiz A Stroll through a Japanese Forest

Answer: Japanese chinquapin

The Japanese chinquapin, 'Castanopsis cuspidata,' is the shii tree. It is an evergreen standing about 25m tall, with leathery leaves. The seeds can be roasted and eaten. It produces catkins which have a slightly unpleasant smell to us but are attractive to the midges that pollinate the tree. Player pusdoc sprouted this question for the Red Crew of Phoenix Rising

5. Although the seedless variety was not produced until 1939, which fruit has origins in Africa from over 5000 years ago?

From Quiz African Flora

Answer: Watermelon

An archaeological site in Libya noted watermelon seeds from 5000 years ago. The argument is whether they originated in Libya or in other African regions. 4000-year-old Egyptian hieroglyphics depict watermelons in wall paintings and tombs, including King Tut's. The watermelon in ancient times was bitter, not the sweet variety we enjoy today. The melons could be stored for months and were a source of water especially during the dry months. Watermelon is from the cucumber family, Cucurbitaceae. The genus is citrullus. The bitter variety is labelled as Citrullus lanatus although is debated. China is the world's leading producer of watermelon and Florida is the leading producing state in the US. Jaknginger prefers the seedless variety sweet and cold as well as pickled watermelon rinds.

6. Which broadleaf evergreen has small, star-shaped flowers followed by blue berries? It is often planted near shrines and is native to much of Japan and other countries of east Asia.

From Quiz A Stroll through a Japanese Forest

Answer: Japanese bay

The Japanese bay, 'Machilus thunbergii', is one of the largest trees found in Japanese old growth forests. It has reddish brown heartwood used for furniture and musical instruments, and the bark has many uses - dyes for silk, mosquito repellants and incense have been made from this tree. Player pusdoc harvested this question for the Phoenix Rising Global Tour 2022

7. What tree, indigenous to Africa, grows seed pods known as indehiscent legumes that produce a sweet but sour pulp used in cuisines around the world?

From Quiz African Flora

Answer: Tamarind

Tamarindus indica is a tree that grows to a medium height in a pleasing vase-like shape. It can be found growing wild throughout Africa and is a traditional food plant. The Madagascar ring-tailed lemur enjoys the fruit and leaves obtaining 50% of its food from it throughout the year. The brown pods contain a pulp that is used in cooking, as medicine and is a useful metal polish. The powder obtained from the kernel of the seed is used as a size in the processing of jute. It is also used in adhesive manufacturing. The leaves can also be eaten when young and tender, and are featured in the cuisines of Philippines and India. Because of its multiple benefits, it has made its way around the world and can be found in many subtropical areas including India, South America, the Caribbean, Malaysia and Indonesia among others. The United States is second only to India in commercial cultivation. Its name comes for the Arabic for 'Indian date' and was known to medieval herbalists. It also got a mention from Marco Polo. Red Crew's smpdit is very fond of the addition of tamarind in the very British H P Sauce (even though it's made in the Netherlands.)

8. Acer palmatum is the Latin name of the Japanese maple. What does 'palmatum' refer to?

From Quiz A Stroll through a Japanese Forest

Answer: Hand-like leaf shape

Acer palmatum have been grown in Japan for centuries, and were extensively exported around the world in the 1800s. Carl Thunberg, a Swedish botanist, named them after the shape of the leaves. They have many different varieties with differing leaf sizes, leaf serrations and colours, height and growth habit of the tress, some are upright, some have a more spreading, or 'weeping' habit. They are a popular choice amongst bonsai aficionados. Red Crew's smpdit has 6 acers growing in her garden that give her great joy.

9. The Japanese technique of 'daisugi' is used on 'Cryptomeria japonica', also known as Japanese cedar. What is 'daisugi'?

From Quiz A Stroll through a Japanese Forest

Answer: A coppicing technique where the tree is not cut down for wood

Daisugi is a coppicing technique which prunes shoots from the base of the tree. This allows branches to grow upwards from lower branches which means the logs can be cut without having to chop down the whole tree. These logs have been used to construct tea rooms used in the 'tea ceremony', dating back to the Muromachi period. Japanese cedar is the only variety of the Cupressaceae family and is generally considered to be endemic to Japan, though it is found in large numbers in China and the Azores where it is grown for wood production. It grows to a height of 70m (230ft) and can have a 4m (13ft) trunk diameter. It is distantly related to the Sequoia family but is its own distinct genus. Its pollen is a major factor for hay fever among the Japanese population. Smpdit thinks this is a very clever way for trees to be used without deforestation.

10. The saintpaulia is a perennial flowering plant native to Tanzania and Kenya. What is the common name for this popular houseplant?

From Quiz African Flora

Answer: African violet

Saintpaulia is a section of plants in the genus Streptocarpus and is commonly known as the African violet, despite not being related to violets. Their colours range from pale pink to red through to blue/purple and their size can be classed as micro to giant. They are also sensitive to sudden temperature drops, especially through cold water which can cause the leaves to become discoloured. Many species of African violets are endangered due to the loss of the cloud rainforests through deforestation for agriculture. This question was carefully potted by leith90, who has a brown thumb when it comes to growing plants.

11. The Japanese elm, 'Ulmus davidiana japonica', suffers from reduced numbers due to the loss of habitat caused by the cultivation of which foodstuff?

From Quiz A Stroll through a Japanese Forest

Answer: Rice

Japanese elm trees have low to moderate resistance to the diseases that affect other elm trees, such as Dutch elm disease and elm leaf beetle. However, the intensive cultivation of rice has had an impact on their habitat as they prefer alluvial, swampy soils. Phoenix Rising's Red Crew's smpdit planted this question firmly in the swamp.

12. Considered native to Africa, this fruit tree requires a wasp for pollination. Which tree is it? If only Zacchaeus was here.

From Quiz African Flora

Answer: Sycamore fig

The sycamore fig, sometimes spelled sycomore, has been around for thousands of years. It is mentioned several times in the Bible, both New and Old Testaments. As hinted in the question, Zacchaeus climbed the sycamore tree for a better view of Jesus. It is also a sacred tree in other religions such as Buddhism and Islam. The wood of this tree was used for Egyptian caskets. It is not just a random tree; fig trees are one of the oldest species bred for production. The sycamore fig, or ficus sycomorus, is a very dense tree and provided shade in the harsh regions of Africa. Fig wasps are required for pollination and full fruit development. The wasp is very small and goes through a small hole in the fig where it lays eggs on the flower inside the fruit. Hence, the fruit is actually an inverted flower. Each species of wasp pollinates its own species of fig. Of course with science, some species no longer require wasps, such as the common fig, ficus carica, which is the primary fruit producer for the modern markets. Phoenix Rising's jaknginger thinks fig preserves, cheese, and crackers are the perfect snack.

13. Although primarily grown for its gorgeous showy blooms, the leaves of Camellia japonica can be used to make which drink?

From Quiz A Stroll through a Japanese Forest

Answer: Tea

Camellia japonica, like other camellias, can be used to make tea. The variety usually used in large-scale tea production is Camellia sinensis, but it will still be fine to drink, and the leaves are rich in terpenoids known to be anti- inflammatory substances. The plant is usually grown for its variety and vibrant coloured blooms, which can range from pale pinks to rich reds and bloom in January to March depending on climate. They prefer a slightly acidic soil. Red Team's smpdit, supped quietly on a tisane of camellia as she wrote this quiz. She is British after all!

14. Which regal bloom is the national flower of South Africa?

From Quiz African Flora

Answer: King protea

The King protea, Protea cynaroides, is a very large bloom befitting its name. The central flowers are surrounded by colorful bracts, with the pink variety most classic. The genus Protea is named for the Greed god Proteus, who took on many different forms - the proteas similarly have a variety of flowers and leaves. The species name, cynaroides, harks to the flower's similarity to an artichoke, as Cynara is the genus that includes the artichoke. Proteas are particularly suited to the harsh environments where they live - they either require fire to cause seeds to sprout, or are able to re-sprout from fire-resistant underground stems. The King protea is in this latter group, able to produce new growth after a fire. The flowers provide food for many sunbirds and sugarbirds, whose bills are suited for probing the flowers to reach the nutrient nectar. It is presumed that when they leave with a dusting of pollen it aids plant reproduction as they visit the next flower cluster. The King protea was named South Africa's national flower in 1976. It appears on official government documents such as passports, birth certificates, and some coins. The South African cricket team is named the Proteas. Phoenix Rising's player pusdoc remembers the delight she experienced when she first saw proteas at the University of California Santa Cruz Arboretum.

15. The Japanese laurel (Aucuba japonica) is a shrub with purple/brown flowers. What colour fruit does it bear?

From Quiz A Stroll through a Japanese Forest

Answer: Red

The Aucuba japonica is a shrub with spotted leaves which gives rise to its common names of 'spotted laurel' and 'gold dust plant'. Its showy leaves and profusion of red berries (drupes) makes it an ideal ornamental plant. The Japanese laurel was introduced to England in 1783, but the plant is dioecious, and they unfortunately only introduced the female variety. It wasn't until a male plant was sourced that the plant bore fruit and became popular. Phoenix Rising's Red crew member leith90 spotted this question and thought the red berries were appropriate for the team.

16. Alternatively described as buna or Siebold's, what deciduous tree, endemic to Japan, grows up to 35 meters (115 ft) and has smooth, grey bark?

From Quiz A Stroll through a Japanese Forest

Answer: Japanese beech

The Japanese beech has the scientific name Fagus crenata and it is also referred to as Siebold's beech or buna. It is one of Japan's most prominent trees in forests ranging across the nation's four main islands. The Japanese beech typically grows in sandy soil known as loam and its leaves and seeds are edible to humans. This question was seeded into the quiz by Phoenix Rising teammate and Red Crew member Triviaballer as part of the team's 2022 World Tour.

17. Bird cherry. Give one of the accepted Latin names (there are multiple names for this, but only one of the listed is used.)

From Quiz Genus Of European Trees

Answer: Padus avium

Padus avium grows up to 15 meter in height. The bird cherry can also be found as a shrub. Linnaeus gave this tree the Latin names Prunus padus or Cerasus padus.

18. Blighia sapida, known by the common name of ackee, is a tree native to West Africa, whose fruits are a staple of various Caribbean cuisines. To whom does this plant owe its scientific name?

From Quiz African Flora

Answer: The captain of HMS Bounty

The name "ackee" for Blighia sapida, a tall evergreen tree native of the forests of West Africa, is derived from "ankye", the name given to the fruits of this tree in the Twi language of Ghana. Ackee belongs to the family Sapindaceae, also known as soapberry family, which also includes maples and the horse chestnut tree. Its generic name "Blighia" was given in honour of the infamous William Bligh, the former captain of HMS Bounty, who in 1973 transported the fruit from Jamaica (where it had been introduced from West Africa in the mid-18th century) to the Royal Botanic Gardens at Kew. Though poisonous if eaten unripe, ackee is perfectly edible when the fruit is allowed to open fully, showing its three large, black seeds. The fleshy arils are then parboiled in water or milk before being cooked with other ingredients; ackee pulp has a mild, nutty flavour, and a texture similar to scrambled eggs. The ackee is Jamaica's national fruit, and ackee and saltfish is Jamaica's official national dish. In West Africa, ackee fruits are also used as laundering agents because of their saponin content. The durable heartwood of the tree is also used for various purposes. LadyNym of Phoenix Rising's Red Crew, who would very much like to try ackee, wrote this question.

19. Well known across the globe as a symbol of Japan, which cultivar, from the genus Prunus, has a profusion of flowers that resemble clouds?

From Quiz A Stroll through a Japanese Forest

Answer: Cherry blossom

The cherry blossom tree, known in Japan as Sakura and across the globe as the Japanese cherry, is instantly recognisable as inherently Japanese as the Shinto shrine. The tree is an ornamental tree from the sub-genus Cerasus, not the fruit-bearing species, and is the National Tree of Japan. Japanese cherry blossom season runs from March to April but can extend from January through to May and follows the season north from the equator. Phoenix Rising's Red Crew member leith90 cultivated this question and allowed it to blossom.

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Last Updated Jul 20 2024 5:48 AM
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