Can You Identify These Common Plants From an Image?

By: Bambi Turner
Image: shutterstock

About This Quiz

To all but the greatest gardeners, most plants basically look the same at first glance. A deeper look, however, reveals subtle differences in leaves, flowers and other features that make it easy to tell one plant from another. Take our quiz to see if you can identify the most common indoor and outdoor plants.

Sunflowers can grow taller than a typical human, and have bright yellow leaves surrounding a brown center. They are the state flower of Kansas, and can be used to produce seeds or oil for food.

Native to Mexico, the poinsettia is named for a U.S. missionary who first brought the plan to the U.S. in 1825. Today, it's popular around the holidays thanks to its red and green color combination.

Hydrangeas are known for their brilliant, ball-like blooms, which can come in blue, white, pink or lavender. What's truly remarkable about this plant is that you can have different color blooms on the same plant -- and you can even change the color of the flowers yourself by adjusting the soil pH.

Native to the wetland areas along the east coast of the U.S., the Venus flytrap is unique among plants. It uses hair triggers to sense when insects or spiders are in reach, then snaps shut to trap its prey.

Magnolias, which are pollinated by beetles, come in both tree and shrub varieties. They are primarily known for their luscious white flowers and deep green leaves.

There are more than 50 species of marigold and many are edible. These flowers produce blooms in orange, gold and red, and bloom throughout the summer.

Part of the lily family, tulips come in shades like red, yellow and white. They featured cup-shaped flowers, or petals arranged in a star shape.

There are nearly 2,000 species of cactus to choose from, and all belong to the succulent family. They range from the mighty Saguaro -- the big cacti you might spot in a wild west film -- to tiny varieties that can be mounted on buttons or magnets.

The cheerful daisy typically features white petals surrounding a yellow center. Native to Europe, the flower opens its petals each morning at dawn, and you may be surprised to know that the leaves are edible in some varieties.

Daylillies get their name from the fact that each flower blooms for a single 24-hour period. Beware of this beautiful bloom, however -- it's highly toxic to cats.

Sago palms look like a palm tree, but these two plants actually have little in common. Native to Japan, they consist of a thick trunk with a large, dark green canopy, making them an ideal plant for greening up a room in the home.

To some they are wildflowers, while others lament them as weeds. Whatever your opinion of them, dandelions come in shades of orange and yellow, and the entire plant is edible.

Aloe includes more than 500 species within the succulent family -- plants known for high drought tolerance. Aloe Vera is one of the best known members of this family because many believe it has medicinal properties, and it's also used in cosmetics and sun lotion.

Known for its gorgeous white flowers and rich green leaves, the peace lily is native to tropical regions of Asia and the Americas. For a flowering plant, it can survive with surprisingly little light or water, but beware -- every part of this plant is mildly toxic.

The snake plant's long, sharply-pointed leaves have given it the nickname "Mother-in-Law's Tongue." This tropical plant is shockingly hard to kill, and can withstand poor light, little water and even most insects and pests.

Like moss, ferns reproduce using spores -- no flowers or seeds here. They can be distinguished from moss by their branched stems and vascular structure.

The Christmas cactus gets its name from its exotic pink and red flowers. The plant is often gifted around the holidays to brighten up dull winter months. Native to Brazil, it's officially called the Schlumbergera and can be recognized by its segmented leaves.

English ivy is one of the most effective plants for improving air quality. It's known for being a super fast grower, and some varieties can climb 50 feet or more.

Native to tropical regions, the Philodendron is a common houseplant thanks to its gorgeous over-sized leaves. A close relative of Pothos, it's easy to grow and comes in lots of varieties.

The long, skinny legs of the spider plant hang down over a flower pot like the legs suspended beneath the body of a spider. Also known as airplane plant, these beauties clean the air and are easy to share with just a simple clipping.

Officially known as a weeping fig, the ficus is a popular indoor plant. Part of the same family as the rubber tree, it's prized for its ability to maintain the neat arbor and trunk appearance of larger trees, but is small enough to fit in well inside the home.

Part of the lily family, the cast-iron plant is native to Japan. It's known for its large leaves which seem to grow straight out the soil, with little to no visible stems. The long, oval leaves of this plant often grow as much as two feet long.

Peperomia is prized for its compact size and easy care. It shares many features with succulents, and is easy to propagate from a simple leaf cutting. The plant comes in varieties with leaves that are striped, mottled or solid to add visual interest to your garden.

Lavender plants feature upright stems with tall flowering spikes. The flowers are generally purple, but can also come in shades like pink and white.

The official state flower of the State of Maryland, the Black-eyed Susan is part of the sunflower family. It consists of yellow leaves surrounding a black or brown center, and some cultures use the plant for nutritional and medicinal purposes.

A tropical plant native to Kenya and Tanzania, the African violet produces flowers in shades ranging from purple to pink to white. As anyone who has ever attempted to grow this plant can attest, it can be finicky, and requires lots of care to produce a bloom.

Dieffenbachia is a popular ornamental houseplant that's prized for its big, bright green leaves. Though it's native to tropical regions, it can be grown all over the world and is remarkably shade-tolerant.

Jade plants are commonly known as money trees or lucky plants. Part of the succulent family, they have thick, shiny leaves. They don't always bloom, but when they do, flowers are white or pink.

Rubber plants have strong and shiny green leaves. They can grow surprisingly tall, or can be kept compact if kept in smaller pots.

Bromeliads are easy to spot because they look so different from the majority of other plants. They feature long, pointed leaves with a central flower that rises out of the middle of the plant. Bromeliads are vulnerable to both frost and leaf burn, so should be kept out of the cold and away from strong sunlight.

The slow-growing dragon tree can get up to 6 feet tall when grown indoors. It has spider plant-like leaves, but beware -- this plant is poisonous to pets.

The ZZ plant is the ultimate plant option for gardeners with less-than-green thumbs. It has few needs, and will survive even if you forget to water it for a while.

There are hundreds of species of rose bushes, and most are native to Asia. They all feature brilliant flowers which can range from the size of buttons to the size of a human hand or larger -- but watch out for thorns.

Pretty and fragrant, orchids are one of the largest plant families on the planet. You may be surprised to learn that they are part of the same family as vanilla.

Named for the ancient Greek goddess, Iris is available in over 300 different species. Its brilliant blooms of purple and blue attract bees and hummingbirds, but keep in mind that these flowers require plenty of light in order to produce a bloom.

Low-maintenance lilac comes in 12 different species. While purple is the most common color, it can also be found in white, yellow and other hues. This sweet flower is used in fragrances and also in some specialty foods.

Part of the genus Narcissus, daffodils come in more than 50 species and range in color from yellow and white to shades of orange and pink. Often, the two sets of petals -- a central cup and a background star-shape -- are two different colors.

Hyacinths come in shades of blue, orange, pink, red and white. They have a very sweet smell, and can be distinguished by their flowers, which bunch up tightly like a bunch of grapes.

Originally, all carnations were pinkish-purple, but they have since been bred to come in a wide varieties of colors. Known for their sweet smell, carnations are common in cut flower arrangements, and popular for use as a men's boutonniere.

There are more than 200 species of jasmine, and most feature small flowers of white or yellow. The flowers grow in clusters of three or more, and the plant also has seeds in the form of small black berries.

Part of the Rhododendron family, azaleas are hardy and easy to care for. They bloom for several weeks each spring, and can handle a surprising amount of shade compared to other flowering plants.

Known for its fragile, feathery leaves, dill is a favorite plant for flavoring or pickling food. Grow it alongside cucumbers and you've got the ingredients for some delicious homemade pickles.

The woodsy Rosemary has evergreen leaves and blue, white or pink flowers. It's largely self-sufficient and easy to grow, and can be used in everything from food or soap-making.

Also known as May bells, lily of the valley is sweet smelling, but incredibly poisonous. It consists of gorgeous blooms in the shape of bells suspended along a tall upright stem.

Foxglove, or digitalis, gets its name from the shape of its flowers, which are shaped just right to fit over a human finger like a glove. While this plant has brilliant flowers, the entire plant is highly poisonous.

Buttercups have shiny yellow leaves, but they are surprisingly poisonous. Even excess contact can cause the poison to seep into your skin.

Pothos is a super easy plant to grow. This trailing vine has leaves shaped like pointed hearts, and will spread quickly with proper care -- though it doesn't generally produce flowers.

Pitcher plants can be found all over the world, and include more than 100 different species. All feature some kind of pitfall trap that captures insects. This may include a curled leaf to a flower-shaped funnel that makes it difficult for the critter to escape.

Oleander is one of the most toxic of all the common plants found in home gardens. This large shrub has pointed leaves and bright bunches of flowers that belie the danger.

Pansies come in a wide range of colors, and the blotches on their petals give them a design that many refer to as a face. They have delicate petals that comes in shades of purple, yellow and white.

About HowStuffWorks Play

How much do you know about dinosaurs? What is an octane rating? And how do you use a proper noun? Lucky for you, HowStuffWorks Play is here to help. Our award-winning website offers reliable, easy-to-understand explanations about how the world works. From fun quizzes that bring joy to your day, to compelling photography and fascinating lists, HowStuffWorks Play offers something for everyone. Sometimes we explain how stuff works, other times, we ask you, but we’re always exploring in the name of fun! Because learning is fun, so stick with us!

Explore More Quizzes