Tis the season for quizzes

Can you name the drifts of vegetation hanging from the trees in this photograph of my cousin, Michael, taken by his wife Tyra, in Florida.

Happy New Year! Whilst the short term view of the year is alarming, the long view does look more hopeful. Meantime Lockdown has returned and Crathes is off limits for volunteers. The gardening staff are still working, but other Crathes staff are on furlough. The walled garden is shut until further notice.

Last year has shown us how the planet’s health is collapsing. If you are looking for resolutions, why not resolve to give up using pesticides? Apart from the wild card (photo above), this quiz is all about helping the insects. You will find the answers below.

Section 1: A bee friendly plant for each month – all fairly easy to grow. Can you give their names (common names will do)? (12 points)

January

February

March

April

May

June

photo Joanna Shaw

July

August

September

October

November

December

Section 2: The bees, wasps and hoverflies are all good pollinators. Can you distinguish between them? (7 points only as no 5 is unverified)

1

2

3

4

5

6

7

8

Section 3: Rate your ‘lawn’ high marks for biodiversity and low marks for grass only. Add a bonus point for each plant that grows there that isn’t grass. Experiment with meadows. Can you name these wild flowers that might turn up in your meadow? (6 points + variable amount of bonuses)

1

2

3

4

5

6

Section 4: Match the genus anagrams of bee friendly shrubs to the picture (6 points)

A  pyscrosilo;  B  pycrahieu;  C   aficush;  D  rheahoi;  E  sluma;  F  sunpur

1

2

3

4

5

6

Section 5: Name the insect (6 points)

1

2

3

4

5

6

Section 6: Three of the insects in section 5 are more recent immigrants to the North-East of Scotland. Can you name them in order of their appearance. (4 points)

ANSWERS:

Wild card (top photo) Spanish Moss (Tillandsia usneoides). I was writing about Spanish Moss recently (Pushing the limits, 6 December) and was particularly interested in a photograph newly posted by my cousin of his trip to Theodore Roosevelt Area Park near Jacksonville, Florida.

Most of the photographs were taken at Crathes; just a few in nearby Torphins where I live.

Section 1: January Daphne (Daphne bholua ‘Jacqueline Postill’); February Snowflake (Leucojum vernum); March Chionodoxa; April Flowering currant (Ribes sanguineum); May Peony (Paeonia mlokosewitschii – Molly the Witch – grows happily at Crathes, but some say it is difficult to grow) June Oriental poppy (Papaver orientale); July Rosa ‘Mundi’; August Monk’s hood (Aconitum napellus); September Butterfly bush (Buddleia x weyeriana ‘Sungold’); October Michaelmas daisies; November Mahonia (Mahonia lomariifolia); December Viburnum (Viburnum x bodnantense ‘Deben’)

Section 2: 1 honeybee; 2 bumblebee; 3 hoverfly; 4 hoverfly; 5 this is a teaser – it was photographed in my garden in June 2009. It is, I think, a type of wasp, possibly Trichrysis cyanea, although it doesn’t appear to have the long antennae – any suggestions welcome; 6 hoverfly; 7 wasp; 8 solitary bee.

Section 3: 1 Yellow rattle (Rhinanthus minor); 2 Ox-eyed daisy (Leucanthemum vulgare); 3 Viper’s bugloss (Echium vulgare) 4 Knapweed (Centaurea nigra); 5 Betony (Betonica officianalis/syn. Stachys officinalis); 6 Orange hawkweed/fox and cubs (Pilosella aurantiaca) – not a native but widely naturalised.

Section 4: 1 /F Prunus; 2/B Euchryphia; 3/D Hoheria; 4/E Malus; 5/A Corylopsis; 6/C Fuchsia.

Section 5: Comma butterfly; Ladybird; Small copper butterfly; Speckled wood butterfly; Garden tiger moth; Tree bumblebee.

Section 6: Speckled wood (Common in Moray in the 1990s, not seen in Aberdeen until around 2018); Comma (seen occasionally in the last decade); Tree bumblebee (first spotted in Scotland in 2013 – seen in Torphins 2020).

Maximum possible score: 42 points + variable bonuses

Take care everyone; I hope it won’t be too long before we are all finding new freedoms.

2 thoughts on “Tis the season for quizzes

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