Answers from quiz on page 5
1. False. Citrona is a genetically modified geranium (pelargonium) plant capable of producing small amounts of citronella, and it was developed to keep mosquitoes at bay. Despite favourable reports from some consumers, scientific testing shows it does not keep mosquitoes away from an area.
2. True. In a confusing twist of language, the plant we regularly refer to as geranium—that highly scented beauty so popular in window boxes— is actually botanically known as Pelargonium and the fabulous shadetolerant groundcover we call cranesbill is technically Geranium. They both come from the family Geraniaceae, and both were considered Geranium until 1789. See? Life really was simpler in the olden days!
3. False. There are about 900 vari-
eties of salvia worldwide.
4. True. If you're looking for horticultural information about salvia on the Internet, be prepared to weed through many sites devoted to use of Salvia divinorum as a recreational drug.
5. True. The plant, known as jimson weed by experimenting teenagers in the US Midwest, has been used as a recreational and sacred drug since ancient times. Experimentation is perilous, though, and many people have died seeking the magical effects. Datura is a member of the nightshade family. 6. True. Tomato and potato are edible members of the deadly nightshade family Solanaceae. The leaves of both plants are toxic. Other common nightshade plants are petunias and tobacco.
7. False. Sweet potato vine is the actual foliage of sweet potatoes. Pull up your plants in the fall and you'll see the sweet potato tubers growing in the soil.
8. True. The frozen product labelled "sweet peas" in the supermarket is not the same thing as the beautiful and sweet-scented sweet peas twining up your fence. Your garden sweet peas are toxic, though you would have to ingest an awful lot to get sick.
9. False. Scarlet runner beans are entirely edible, although many gardeners grow them just for their ornamental effect.
10. False. Scarlet runner beans are actually tender perennials. If you took the time to lift and store the roots over the winter, as you might with dahlias, you could replant them in spring.