Gardening Quiz - Friends and Foes - Diseases (Questions)

There are many different sorts of organism that plant pathologists group together under the general heading of 'plant diseases. Fungi cause problems like powdery mildew, an organism known as an oomycete causes potato blight whilst various viruses cause damage to a large range of crops.

To the gardener, the scientific classification of a disease is of little importance - what he or she needs to know is how to deal with it! This quiz will help you identify the diseases that you are most likely to come across and also give you a few tips for dealing with the various associated problems.

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1. This attractive looking fungus is a deadly threat to gardeners. What is its name?
[ ] Beeswax fungus
[ ] Honey fungus
[ ] Sugar fungus
[ ] Syrup fungus
2. What organism causes the type of die-back of a tree's branches known as canker?
[ ] Bacteria
[ ] Fungi
[ ] Virus
[ ] All of the above
3. This is Botrytis cinerea. What is its usual name in the gardening world?
[ ] Grey disease
[ ] Grey mildew
[ ] Grey mould
[ ] Grey rot
4. The curse of rose growers is rose Black Spot but do you know what type of organism it is caused by?
[ ] Bacteria
[ ] Fungus
[ ] Oomycete
[ ] Virus
5. Potato blight was responsible for the greatest farming tragedy in the history of the British Isles. How many people are estimated to have died during the Irish Potato Famine in the mid 1800s?
[ ] One thousand
[ ] Ten thousand
[ ] One hundred thousand
[ ] One million
6. These roots are infected with the disease known as clubroot. Which group of plants are most often affected?
[ ] Brassicas
[ ] Herbaceous plants
[ ] Top fruit
[ ] Soft fruit
7. Between which two countries has animosity been created because of fireblight?
[ ] Australia and New Zealand
[ ] China and the USA
[ ] England and France
[ ] Spain and Portugal
8. What is the name given to the group of fungi that create leaf disfiguration similar to that seen below?
[ ] Plant blemish
[ ] Plant freckle
[ ] Plant rust
[ ] Plant spot
9. Where on a plant would you expect to see the first signs of powdery mildew?
[ ] Growing tips
[ ] Upper leaves
[ ] Lower leaves
[ ] Base of the stem
10. Pythium (as seen in the picture below) is one of a number of diseases that cause the sudden collapse of seedlings often referred to as 'damping off'. Which of the diseases below is NOT a cause of damping off?
[ ] Botulism
[ ] Fusarium
[ ] Phytophthora
[ ] Rhizoctonia
Gardening Quiz - Friends and Foes - Diseases (Answers)
1. This attractive looking fungus is a deadly threat to gardeners. What is its name?
[ ] Beeswax fungus
[x] Honey fungus
[ ] Sugar fungus
[ ] Syrup fungus
2. What organism causes the type of die-back of a tree's branches known as canker?
[ ] Bacteria
[ ] Fungi
[ ] Virus
[x] All of the above
Canker is a word used to describe similar effects caused by many different organisms
3. This is Botrytis cinerea. What is its usual name in the gardening world?
[ ] Grey disease
[ ] Grey mildew
[x] Grey mould
[ ] Grey rot
4. The curse of rose growers is rose Black Spot but do you know what type of organism it is caused by?
[ ] Bacteria
[x] Fungus
[ ] Oomycete
[ ] Virus
5. Potato blight was responsible for the greatest farming tragedy in the history of the British Isles. How many people are estimated to have died during the Irish Potato Famine in the mid 1800s?
[ ] One thousand
[ ] Ten thousand
[ ] One hundred thousand
[x] One million
A further million people emigrated as a result of the famine, thus changing the face of Ireland forever. All because large numbers of people were dependent on the potato as a food crop and it was nearly wiped out because of blight.
6. These roots are infected with the disease known as clubroot. Which group of plants are most often affected?
[x] Brassicas
[ ] Herbaceous plants
[ ] Top fruit
[ ] Soft fruit
The term 'brassica' is used to collectively describe the large group of vegetables that include cabbages, cauliflowers and turnips
7. Between which two countries has animosity been created because of fireblight?
[x] Australia and New Zealand
[ ] China and the USA
[ ] England and France
[ ] Spain and Portugal
Australia (where there is no fireblight) will not allow the importation of New Zealand apples because fireblight is known to exist in New Zealand
8. What is the name given to the group of fungi that create leaf disfiguration similar to that seen below?
[ ] Plant blemish
[ ] Plant freckle
[x] Plant rust
[ ] Plant spot
9. Where on a plant would you expect to see the first signs of powdery mildew?
[ ] Growing tips
[ ] Upper leaves
[x] Lower leaves
[ ] Base of the stem
10. Pythium (as seen in the picture below) is one of a number of diseases that cause the sudden collapse of seedlings often referred to as 'damping off'. Which of the diseases below is NOT a cause of damping off?
[x] Botulism
[ ] Fusarium
[ ] Phytophthora
[ ] Rhizoctonia
Botulism is a serious disease associated with humans - not plants!