Biology Trivia

From the 1500's to the 1700's, tobacco was prescribed by doctors to treat a variety of ailments including headaches, toothaches, arthritis and bad breath.

Ginger has been clinically demonstrated to work twice as well as Dramamine for fighting motion sickness, with no side effects.

Hydroponics is the technique by which plants are grown in water without soil.

In 1865 opium was grown in the state of Virginia and a product was distilled from it that yielded 4 percent morphine. In 1867 it was grown in Tennessee: six years later it was cultivated in Kentucky. During these years opium, marijuana and cocaine could be purchased legally over the counter from any druggist.

In 1924, Pope Urban VIII threatened to excommunicate snuff users.

In 1932 James Markham obtained the 1st patent issued for a tree. The patent was for a peach tree.

In Siberia, in 1994, a container full of marijuana was discovered in the 2,000-year-old grave of a Scythian princess and priestess, among the many other articles buried with her.

In the Netherlands, in 1634, a collector paid 1,000 pounds of cheese, four oxen, eight pigs, 12 sheep, a bed, and a suit of clothes for a single bulb of the Viceroy tulip.

Morphine was given its name in 1803 by the discoverer, a 20 year old German pharmacist named Friedrich Saturner. He named it after Morpheus, the Greek god of dreams.

No species of wild plant produces a flower or blossom that is absolutely black, and so far, none has been developed artificially.

Nutmeg is extremely poisonous if injected intravenously.

Oak trees do not have acorns until they are fifty years old or older.

You shed and regrow your skin every 28 days, that's about 1000 times in a lifetime.

The shark has to keep moving to stay alive.

An iguana always lands on its feet.

Flamingos turn pink from eating shrimp because of the beta-carotene content in the shrimp. Flamingos that don't eat shrimp are white and not pink. Beta-carotene is also in carrots.

When you are eating a piece of fruit, you are eating a swollen ovary!

Beer, as all alcoholic drinks, is made by fermentation caused by bacteria feeding on the yeast cells, then defecating. This bacterial excrement is called alcohol.

The spleen is an organ that performs several functions related to the health of your blood. First, it filters out and destroys old red blood cells. Second, it manufactures some of the white blood cells that form your immune system. And finally, it can actually manufacture new red blood cells, especially if the bone marrow isn't working properly.

84% of a raw apple is water.

99% of the pumpkins sold in the US end up as jack-o-lanterns.

A cucumber is 96% water.

A notch in a tree will remain the same distance from the ground as the tree grows.

A pineapple is a berry.

Absinthe is another name for the herb wormwood (Artemisia absinthium) and the name of a licorice-anise flavored green liqueur that was created at the end of the 18th century, and manufactured by Henry-Louis Pernod. Called the 'green Muse' it became very popular in the 19th century, but was eventually banned in most countries beginning in 1908.

According to the Guinness Book of World Records, the single-seeded fruit of the giant fan palm, or Lodoicea maldivica, can weigh 44 lbs. Commonly known as the double coconut or coco de mer, it is found wild only in the Seychelles in the Indian Ocean.

Advertisements for coffee in London in 1657 claimed that the beverage was a cure for scurvy, gout and other ills.

Almonds are the oldest, most widely cultivated and extensively used nuts in the world.

Americans eat more bananas than any other fruit: a total of 11 billion a year.

An average ear of corn has 800 kernels, arranged in 16 rows.

Willow bark, which provides the salicylic acid from which aspirin was originally synthesized, has been used as a pain remedy ever since the Greeks discovered its therapeutic power nearly 2,500 years ago.

Wine grapes, oranges, figs and olives were first planted in North America by Father Junipero Sera in 1769.

Arrowroot, an antidote for poisoned arrows, is used as a thickener in cooking.

Avocados have the highest calories of any fruit at 167 calories per hundred grams.

Banana oil never saw a banana; it's made from petroleum.

Bananas are actually herbs. Bananas die after fruiting, like all herbs do.

Both George Washington and Thomas Jefferson grew cannabis sativa (marijuana) on their plantations.

Cranberries are one of just 3 major fruits native to North America. Blueberries and Concord grapes are the other two.

Dr. Joel Poinsett, the 1st US ambassador to Mexico, brought the poinsettia to US in 1828. The plant, called "flower of the blessed night" in Mexico was renamed in Poinsett's honor.

Eggplant is a member of the thistle family.

One pound of tea can make 300 cups of the beverage.

One ragweed plant can release as many as one billion grains of pollen.

Oranges, lemons, watermelons, and tomatoes are berries.

Orchids have the smallest seeds. It takes more than 1.25 million seeds to weigh 1 gram.

Peanuts are beans.

The blue whale can produce the loudest sound produced by an animal - up to 188 decibels - and detected as far away as 853 kms (530mi).

The giraffe is one of the quietest animals: it has no vocal chords to make any noise.

A goldfish (like most marine fish) can survive in a tank full of human blood. Yashna, Canada.

In seahorses, it's the male who gives birth to the young.

From 70 to 80 percent of all ripe olives are grown in California's approximately 35,000 acres. In the 1700s, Franciscan monks brought olives to Mexico and then into California by way of the missions. The first cuttings were planted in 1769 at the San Diego Mission. Commercial cultivation of California olives began in the late 1800s. Today, anywhere from 80,000 to 160,000 tons of olives are produced in California each year.

Plants that need to attract moths for pollination are generally white or pale yellow, to be better seen when the light is dim. Plants that depend on butterflies, such as the poppy or the hibiscus, have more colorful flowers.

Quinine, one of the most important drugs known to man, is obtained from the dried bark of an evergreen tree native to South America.

Rice paper isn't made from rice but from a small tree which grows in Taiwan.

Tea was so expensive when it was first brought to Europe in the early 17th century that it was kept in locked wooden boxes.

The California redwood - coast redwood and giant sequoia - are the tallest and largest living organism in the world.

The first American advertisement for tobacco was published in 1789. It showed a picture of an Indian smoking a long clay pipe.

The fragrance of flowers is due to the essences of oil which they produce.

The largest single flower is the Rafflesia or "corpse flower". They are generally 3 feet in diameter with the record being 42 inches.

The oldest living thing in existence is not a giant redwood, but a bristlecone pine in the White Mountains of California, dated to be aged 4,600 years old.

The pineapple was symbol of welcome in the 1700-1800's. That is why in New England you will see so many pineapples on door knockers. An arch in Providence RI leading into the Federal Hill neighborhood has a pineapple on it for that very reason. Pineapples were brought home by seafarers as gifts.

The plant life in the oceans make up about 85 percent of all the greenery on the Earth.

The popular name for the giant sequoia tree is Redwood.

The rose family of plants, in addition to flowers, gives us apples, pears, plums, cherries, almonds, peaches and apricots.

The world's tallest grass, which has sometimes grown 130 feet or more, is bamboo.

There are more than 700 species of plants that grow in the United States that have been identified as dangerous if eaten. Among them are some that are commonly favored by gardeners: buttercups, daffodils, lily of the valley, sweet peas, oleander, azalea, bleeding heart, delphinium, and rhododendron.

Wheat is the world's most widely cultivated plant; grown on every continent except Antarctica.

When a coffee seed is planted, it takes five years to yield consumable fruit.

When you give someone roses, the color can have a meaning. The meaning of rose colors:
Red = Love and respect
Deep pink = Gratitude, appreciation
Light pink = Admiration, sympathy
White = Reverence, humility
Yellow = Joy, gladness
Orange = Enthusiasm, desire
Red & yellow blend = Gaiety, joviality
Pale blended tones = Sociability, friendship

Marge Simpson shared a jail cell with Tattoo Annie when she went to prison for 30 days due to shoplifting at the kwik-E-Mart.

Using radar imaging, scientists in Siberia recently located a wooly mammoth carcass. They jackhammered the carcass from the frozen tundra, and transported it to an ice cellar in Khatanga, Russia. The mammoth died at the age of 47 about 20,000 years ago, and should provide excellent samples of plants and other animal remains. Plans are afoot to attempt cloning of the mammoth by transplanting a cell nucleus into an elephant egg, and implanting it into a living elephant. Won't she be in for a surprise when she meets Junior?

It has been medically proven that alcohol, does in fact, kill brain cells. However, the use of marijuana, has also been medically proven to only numb the brain cells. When the user comes down from the high produced by the marijuana is when the cells are 'waking' or coming out of the numbing process. Until recently, scientists had reported that brain cells, once destroyed, cannot regenerate. Recent research has proven this to be false. The brain -can- actually regenerate brain cells.

Scotophobia - a fear of the dark and also the fear of anything Scottish!

Giraffes have adapted an extraordinary tongue for obtaining their staple food source, acacia leaves.

Cadang-Cadang disease, which occurs in coconut trees, is named after the noise the coconuts make when they fall to the ground.

Many scientists say that the most effective sleeping position is the fetus position. Reason? That position allows the body to experience the best blood circulation.

THX-1138 is the name of a 1971 movie by George Lucas. The numbers 1138 can be found in nearly all Lucas movies. In Star Wars, 1138 is the detention cell where Leia is held. In Raiders of the Lost Ark, it is on a license plate on a car in Egypt.

Cats eyes shine at night because of the light reflected by the tapetum, a layer of cells forming a large part of the inner eye.

Tamoxifen is the most commonly prescrived antiestrogenic drug used in hormone therapy to treat breast cancer.

Kitchen dishcloths and sponges, notorious for harboring bacteria which can cause foodborne illnesses, can be sanitized by using a household microwave oven. Researchers at the University of Wisconsin and the University of California-Davis eliminated E coli 0157:H7 and Staphylococcus and other bacteria by exposing cotton dishcloths and cellulose sponges to microwaves for one minute at the highest setting.

The worlds largest crossword-puzzel contained 82951 cells.

Pregnant women are advised not to come in contact with cat feces, because it can contain an organism which can affect the unborn child and even cause miscarriage.
Digg Google Bookmarks reddit Mixx StumbleUpon Technorati Yahoo! Buzz DesignFloat Delicious BlinkList Furl