Three part plant quiz

I’m out of town this week, and taking lots of plant pictures.  Here’s an interesting tree, quite common in the city where I’m staying:

Question 1:  What kind of tree is this?  (Genus is good enough – species might be hard to tell.)

Question 2:  In what geographical region might I be staying?  (The tree is native as far as I know.)

Question 3:  What are these woody structures called, and what function do they play?

Answers next week!

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Linda Chalker-Scott

Dr. Linda Chalker-Scott has a Ph.D. in Horticulture from Oregon State University and is an ISA certified arborist and an ASCA consulting arborist. She is WSU’s Extension Urban Horticulturist and a Professor in the Department of Horticulture, and holds two affiliate associate professor positions at University of Washington. She conducts research in applied plant and soil sciences, publishing the results in scientific articles and university Extension fact sheets. Linda also is the award-winning author of five books: the horticultural myth-busting The Informed Gardener (2008) and The Informed Gardener Blooms Again (2010) from the University of Washington Press and Sustainable Landscapes and Gardens: Good Science – Practical Application (2009) from GFG Publishing, Inc., and How Plants Work: The Science Behind the Amazing Things Plants Do from Timber Press (2015). Her latest effort is an update of Art Kruckeberg’s Gardening with Native Plants of the Pacific Northwest from UW Press (2019). In 2018 Linda was featured in a video series – The Science of Gardening – produced by The Great Courses. She also is one of the Garden Professors – a group of academic colleagues who educate and entertain through their blog and Facebook pages. Linda’s contribution to gardeners was recognized in 2017 by the Association for Garden Communicators as the first recipient of their Cynthia Westcott Scientific Writing Award. "The Garden Professors" Facebook page - "The Garden Professors" Facebook group - Books:

8 thoughts on “Three part plant quiz”

  1. Hmm… Okay, I’ll guess it is a Ficus. As for where you are, not a clue beyond somewhere tropical/substropical.
    For question 3, I’m resisting the urge to google here, but I THINK they’re called buttress roots and serve to provided structural support to keep the tree from falling over.

  2. 1. Ficus sp. (maybe F. benjamina)

    2, Tropical asia

    3. Buttress roots; steadying trunk and increasing amount of nutrients absorbed on tropical soils along with destroying retirees’ sidewalks

  3. 1.Ficus obliqua
    3.Stilt roots: these are adventitious support roots, common among mangroves. They grow down from lateral branches, branching in the soil

  4. My first thought is that it’s a kapok tree (Ceiba), and that you are somewhere in the tropics. The roots are called buttress roots. Sounds as if you’re on a trip somewhere exotic!

  5. Ha! It is really a heavy canvas tarp that someone grabbed by one corner and tried to pull. Looks like it has been there awhile so there are probably mice living underneath it. Don’t ask me how I know this.

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