The Flower Quiz

SCIENCE

Daniel Yetman

6 Min Quiz

Image: Joe Regan / Moment / Getty Images

About This Quiz

It's no secret that the flower industry is blooming — whoops, we mean booming. Every Valentine's Day in the United States, people spend close to $2 billion on flowers. If you factor in Mother's Day, Easter, birthday's, funerals and weddings, it's easy to see how important flowers are in our daily lives. When was the last time you bought flowers for somebody special? We bet that it was in the last three months. 

Many of the most colorful flowers we enjoy in our gardens and bouquets today originally came from subtropical and tropical climates around the world. For example, the lily was originally distributed across southern Europe and Asia, but European explorers would later bring it to America. If you have a green thumb, you can plant basically any flower you want at home and expect it to flourish. 

There are thought to be more than 400,000 plants that flower, and we're going to test you on all of them! Okay, we're only going to quiz you on 40 of them, but that's still not bud — er, bad. Are these flower puns not landing? Don't worry, they'll grow on you. So put the petal to medal and let's get started!

The flower is the international symbol for romance. What's it called?

Is there anything more romantic than receiving a red rose? The history of the red rose is thought to date back to Greece when it was a symbol of Aphrodite. Shakespeare also referred to them as a symbol of love throughout his work.

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There are over 250,000 species of which of these beautiful flowers?

Orchids are among the most common flowers sold at flower shops. They come in many different colors, including blue, purple, red, pink and white. They're easily recognizable by their big, open petals.

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What's the name of this common backyard flower?

The sunflower has to be one of the most universally recognized flowers. Interestingly enough, young sunflowers will track the sun throughout the day. As they get older, they generally face east to catch the morning sun.

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Which of these flowers plays a role in Buddhist culture?

In Buddhism, the lotus flower is a symbol of spiritual awakening. You can find lotus flowers growing in shallow lakes, where the root can bury into the mud and the flower can float on the water.

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This flower is often used in celebrations of love. It's a ...?

The dahlia is a gorgeous flower made up of dozens of tiny petals. If you were to play a game of "she loves me, she loves me not" with a dahlia, it might take half the afternoon!

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You'll see many of these around town on mother's day. What are they called?

You'll commonly see carnations around celebrations like weddings or Mother's Day. If you give somebody red carnations, it has more of a connotation of love than other variations, so maybe stick to white when giving them to somebody who isn't your significant other.

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Which flower is a symbol of faith, friendship, and hope?

There are roughly 300 species of Iris. The Iris is often grown in gardens ornamentally. Yellow iris is sometimes planted as a natural water filter because its roots can absorb various agricultural chemicals.

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This usually purple flower is called what?

There are over a thousand types of lilac. They're most commonly pink or purple. However, you can also find them in pink, magenta, white and blue. Lilac trees can grow up to a towering 30-feet high.

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This magnificent flower is known as a _____?

Magnolias technically don't have petals. The 'leaves' of the magnolia plant are known as tepals since the inner and outer parts of the flower look the same. No matter what they're called, they're beautiful!

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The next time you're in South Africa, you might see one of these. Can you tell us what it's called?

If you're in the Cape Town area, keep your eyes open for this unique looking flower. They're easy to recognize by their vertical petals and bright colors. They're also nicknamed sugarbushes.

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Children love playing with this type of flower. Can you name it?

Whether they're your favorite type of flower or not, snapdragons have one of the coolest names. The name comes from the flower's shape, which looks similar to the snout of a dragon. They originated in the U.K.

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Maybe you know somebody who shares a name with this flower. What is it?

Laurel is also known as calico-bush, ivybush or spoonwood. Each flower looks like a tiny upside-down umbrella. In North America, it grows in much of the United States and is the state flower of Connecticut.

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They have one of the shortest lifespans of any flower. What are they?

This beautiful flower only blooms for a single day. Maybe their fleetingness makes them even more beautiful than they would be otherwise. If you happen to see one of these in full-bloom, savor the moment.

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Which of these flowers comes with a sad connotation?

The cypress flower almost makes a perfect star shape when you look at it from the top. You may see a vine of these red, white or pink flowers at a funeral or in another place of mourning.

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Do you know what type of blossom this is?

If you happen to live somewhere near cherry trees, enjoy these beautiful blossoms while they're in season. Many Asian countries, such as Japan or Korea, have festivals to celebrate their beauty in the springtime.

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This flower comes in red, purple, white and pink. What's it called?

Heather usually blooms from the mid-summer until the fall. Besides being pretty to look at, people also use Heather in the making of beds, pillows and ropes. Heather plants can survive for up to 40 years.

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What's the name of this exotic flower?

The bird of paradise is also known as the crane flower and is named after the colorful birds-of-paradise which live in Indonesia and Papua New Guinea. If you want to see this flower in the wild, you'll have to travel to South Africa.

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Even if you don't recognize them, you probably know this flower's name. What is it?

Daisy's have been used as decorations for thousands of years dating back to Ancient Egypt. Do you know where their name comes from? Daisy comes from the Anglo Saxon word "daes eage" meaning "day's eye."

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This species is invasive in North America. It's called ...?

If you get down on your knees and sniff this flower, you might find that it has a carrot-like smell. Queen Anne's Lace commonly grows around roadsides and undisturbed fields. It's originally native to Europe and Asia but is now found in North America as well.

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Some guys may call their friend this when they're being a scaredy-cat. What is it?

Pansies contain bright colored petals that can be mesmerizing. Some people think that the flower looks like a face that's deep in thought, which is how they got their name from the French "pensee."

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Can you name this flower that's in the iris family?

Crocus grow naturally in southern Europe to central Asia. You know it's officially spring when you see these flowers in bloom in bright lavender and yellow.

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What's the name of this flower with 6 petals?

Tulips are one of the most popular flowers around the world. You'll probably see plenty of these flowers in gardens during the springtime and in gift shops around Easter. If you want to plant them in your garden, plant them early!

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What are these golden flowers called?

The daffodil flower is a symbol of new beginnings. In England, people often refer to them as "Lent Lillies" because of their association with the holiday. Daffodils also come in white and orange.

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You probably have strong feelings about this exotic flower. Any ideas?

Are you passionate about passion flowers? If you've ever seen them in real life, it's hard not to admire their beauty. Many varieties look more like gaudy designs than flowers.

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You may recognize this flower from a certain holiday. What flower is it?

The poppy may be most well-known as a memorial symbol for veterans who lost their lives in the World Wars. You probably usually see red poppies when it comes to honoring veterans, but they also come in other colors such as pink, yellow and purple.

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These pointed flowers go by what name?

It's pretty clear how this flower got its name. You can probably figure it out easily. They originate from Canary Island and Cape Verde islands and come in different shades of orange and yellow.

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This ball-shaped flower is known as what?

There are over 500 species of this flower. They're relatively common for weddings or home gardens since they have a unique spherical shape and tightly bound petals. You can find them in white, pink, orange, red and yellow.

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Can you identify this dark flower?

The name of this flower sounds like a milkshake you might find at a '50s style diner. However, despite their tasty name, they're mainly an ornamental flower, so we don't recommend trying them.

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This is a type of lily from Southern Africa. Can you name it?

The Calla Lily look different than the lilies you see most commonly in flower shops. It originates in Swaziland and South Africa, but like most tropical flowers, has made its way around the world.

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This flower is named like a color. It's a ...?

Fuchsia are a common hanging flower that were first discovered more than 300 years ago in the Caribbean. They actually weren't named after the color fuschia but the German scientist Leonhart Fuchs.

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You can often find these floating on the water in tropical areas. What are they?

They may look similar to the lotus flower, but the waterlily is a separate species. You can often find them floating on the water among lily pads in tropical regions such as Thailand or Vietnam.

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What's the name of these upside-down flowers?

Is there any flower with a sadder name than bleeding hearts? They usually come in pink or red varieties, but you can also find them in white. Can you guess by looking at them how they got their name?

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Can you name this common wedding flower?

You can find gerbera in a variety of vibrant colors, including purple, white and pink. They're a favorite wedding and bouquet flower for their big petals that bloom year-round. Are they among your favorites?

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These sugary flowers are known as what?

The next time you're on the Mediterranean island of Sicily, take a look around for sweet pea flowers. Or if you don't feel like taking a flight to Italy, you can try planting red, pink, purple or white varieties in your backyard.

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Can you name this globe-shaped flower?

You know it's summer when you see hydrangeas out in full bloom. They come in several colors, including blue, pink, white and purple. Hydrangeas originate from eastern Asia, including Japan and China.

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Don't mistake this flower for a rose. It's a ______?

There are more than 1,800 types of begonia around the world. Even though they may look like roses, they're their own distinct species. You can find them in red, orange and yellow varieties.

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There are more than 3,000 types of ...?

Camellia flowers originate from Southern Asia to Japan. The seeds of the camellia plant can be pressed into tea oil, which is one of the most popular cooking oils in China. Have you ever tried cooking with camellia?

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Which of these flowers look eerily similar to a pinwheel?

If you want to see a plumeria flower in the wild, you can take a trip over to Hawaii. You can find them in yellow, red, white, or pink varieties. They also have a sweet aroma, so don't forget to smell the flowers!

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This flower has the same name as a sea critter. What is it?

Which one do you think was named first, the sea anemone or the flower anemone? The flower got its name first for the Greek word for wind. Although if you see the two organisms side by side, it's easy to see why sea anemones were named after the flower.

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Can you name this flower that has been cultivated in China for thousands of years?

They may not be one of the easier flowers to pronounce, but they're definitely one of the most beautiful. You can easily recognize chrysanthemums for their small petals that curl toward themselves.

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