The Botany of Desire Test | Mid-Book Test - Medium

Michael Pollan
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This test consists of 5 multiple choice questions, 5 short answer questions, and 10 short essay questions.

Multiple Choice Questions

1. Red and Golden are two forms of North American cultivars of this particular type of apple ______.
(a) Amazing.
(b) Tasty.
(c) Delicious.
(d) Juicy.

2. Before flowers, sexual reproduction consisted of _____ being dispersed by the wind to be caught by other plants.
(a) Pollen.
(b) Petals.
(c) Pistils.
(d) Stamens.

3. Chapman planted 'Johnny weed' because he thought that it would prevent the contraction of ______.
(a) Malaria.
(b) Tuberculosis.
(c) Polio.
(d) Hayfever.

4. Chinese poets likened the blossoms of the peony to a ______.
(a) Bee's sexual organs.
(b) Man's sexual organs.
(c) Woman's sexual organs.
(d) Elephant's sexual organs.

5. _______ is the name of the black version of the tulip and is as close to black as a flower gets.
(a) Queen of Night.
(b) Queen of Darkness.
(c) Black Dhalia.
(d) Queen of Despair.

Short Answer Questions

1. Almost all apples grown for eating are cultivars, meaning that they are ______.

2. Fortius, a professor, could be seen patrolling the streets of the city, ______ any tulip that he encountered.

3. Chapman was known to go _______ in all kinds of weather and took it as a matter of pride in his toughness.

4. The book states that the presence of flowers is a reliable predictor of future _____ and therefore was important to humans in the past.

5. Michael Pollen compares Chapman to the Greek mythological figures _______.

Short Essay Questions

1. Pollan points out there may or may not be a correlation between the beautiful and the good. What does he think there is probably a correlation between?

2. What are the colors and the shapes of flowers designed to do, according to some scientists?

3. What is the main reason why the apple is presented in a book about the idea of desire? How does the apple relate to desire?

4. Why does Pollan says that he thinks tulips really were flowers which were designed for children?

5. What happens when a person cuts an apple at its equator with a sharp knife?

6. What does Pollan have to say about his tendency to speculate and about the connection between flowers and speculation?

7. What is connection between the plants in the book and their impact on the human society and vice-versa?

8. What are the four important classes of domesticated plants which influenced the way in which Pollan chose the plants for the book?

9. What are some of the effects of the chemicals within plants which begin the argument that plants might be designed to change humans?

10. What is the classic example of coevolution that Pollan presents at the start of the book?

(see the answer keys)

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