Species and Varieties, Their Origin by Mutation Trivia Questions and Answers

While studying the evening primrose, Hugo de Vries made a groundbreaking discovery that challenged Darwin’s theory of evolution. What was his key discovery?

  • New species arise through sudden leaps, termed mutations.
  • Evolution occurs through gradual changes over time.
  • Natural selection is the primary force driving evolution.
  • New species arise through hybridization of existing species.

Correct Answer: New species arise through sudden leaps, termed mutations.

Correct Answer Explanation: Hugo de Vries observed that new species of evening primroses appeared suddenly and not gradually. He named this process mutation, challenging Darwin’s theory of gradual evolution.

De Vries argued that mutations are not random events, but instead, they often occur in groups. What evidence did he use to support this claim?

  • He found that mutations always occurred in specific environmental conditions.
  • He observed that mutations often occurred in a specific sequence.
  • He saw that the same mutations occurred repeatedly in different individuals of the same species.
  • He noticed that mutations were always beneficial to the organism.

Correct Answer: He saw that the same mutations occurred repeatedly in different individuals of the same species.

Correct Answer Explanation: De Vries observed that the same mutations, like the appearance of new flower colors or leaf shapes, occurred in different plants of the same species, suggesting a pattern rather than randomness.

De Vries argued that mutations are inheritable. This means that the new traits produced by mutations are passed on to subsequent generations. What evidence did he use to support this claim?

  • He observed that mutations could be reversed in subsequent generations.
  • He found that mutated traits disappeared after a few generations.
  • He saw that the mutated traits were consistently present in offspring of mutated individuals.
  • He noticed that the offspring of mutated individuals often had different mutations than their parents.

Correct Answer: He saw that the mutated traits were consistently present in offspring of mutated individuals.

Correct Answer Explanation: De Vries observed that the offspring of plants with mutated traits, like a new flower color, inherited that same trait consistently, demonstrating that mutations were passed down through generations.

According to De Vries, what is the difference between elementary species and varieties?

  • Elementary species are stable and distinct from their ancestors, while varieties are derived from their parent species through the loss or gain of a single characteristic.
  • Elementary species are derived from their parent species through the loss or gain of a single characteristic, while varieties are stable and distinct from their ancestors.
  • Elementary species are unstable and constantly changing, while varieties are stable and distinct.
  • Elementary species are always more robust than varieties.

Correct Answer: Elementary species are stable and distinct from their ancestors, while varieties are derived from their parent species through the loss or gain of a single characteristic.

Correct Answer Explanation: De Vries explained that elementary species represent a stable unit within a larger species, while varieties are deviations from the elementary species due to changes in a single characteristic.

De Vries’s theory of mutationism emphasized the importance of sudden changes in an organism’s genetic makeup. What is another term for these sudden changes?

  • Adaptions
  • Natural Selection
  • Evolution
  • Mutations

Correct Answer: Mutations

Correct Answer Explanation: Mutations are the sudden, inheritable changes in the genetic makeup of an organism that can lead to new species or varieties. De Vries’s theory highlighted the significance of mutations in evolution.

One of the key concepts explored by De Vries is the concept of “latent characters.” What are latent characters?

  • Traits that are only expressed in certain environmental conditions.
  • Traits that are always present in an organism.
  • Traits that are completely dormant and never expressed.
  • Traits that are passed down from the mother only.

Correct Answer: Traits that are only expressed in certain environmental conditions.

Correct Answer Explanation: Latent characters refer to traits that are present in an organism’s genetic makeup but are not always expressed. They can be activated under specific conditions, like a specific environment or a mutation.

De Vries discussed the importance of “vicinism” in horticultural practices. What is vicinism?

  • The influence of neighboring plants on the variability of a variety.
  • The tendency for plants to grow close together.
  • The ability of plants to adapt to their environment.
  • The practice of selecting for specific traits in plants.

Correct Answer: The influence of neighboring plants on the variability of a variety.

Correct Answer Explanation: Vicinism describes how neighboring plants can influence the variability of a variety through cross-pollination, leading to changes in traits like flower color or leaf shape.

According to De Vries, how does nourishment influence variability in plants?

  • Nourishment has no impact on variability.
  • Better nourishment always leads to more robust and variable plants.
  • Better nourishment can lead to more robust plants and more significant expressions of anomalies.
  • Better nourishment always leads to more robust plants with fewer anomalies.

Correct Answer: Better nourishment can lead to more robust plants and more significant expressions of anomalies.

Correct Answer Explanation: De Vries observed that better-nourished plants tend to be more robust and may exhibit more significant expressions of anomalies, indicating a link between nourishment and variability.

De Vries argued that evolution happens in periods of mutability followed by periods of stability. What are these periods of mutability characterized by?

  • Rapid extinction of species.
  • The appearance of new species and varieties.
  • The disappearance of old species.
  • Slow changes in existing species.

Correct Answer: The appearance of new species and varieties.

Correct Answer Explanation: De Vries believed that evolution occurs in bursts of activity when new species and varieties appear quickly due to mutations, followed by periods of stability where these new forms remain relatively unchanged.

According to De Vries, what are the limitations of artificial selection?

  • Artificial selection cannot create new species.
  • Artificial selection is always ineffective.
  • Artificial selection can only be used to improve existing species.
  • Artificial selection can only be used on plants.

Correct Answer: Artificial selection cannot create new species.

Correct Answer Explanation: De Vries acknowledged that artificial selection can improve traits within a species but cannot create new species. He argued that mutations are the primary driving force for the appearance of new species.

De Vries used the example of the “Galland” wheat to demonstrate the impact of vicinism. What happened to the “Galland” wheat when it was grown near local varieties?

  • It became more robust and productive.
  • It lost its desirable characteristics.
  • It developed new and beneficial traits.
  • It remained unchanged.

Correct Answer: It lost its desirable characteristics.

Correct Answer Explanation: De Vries observed that the “Galland” wheat, a valuable variety, lost its desirable traits when grown near local varieties due to cross-pollination and the influence of vicinism.

In his experiments with the wild oat (Avena fatua), De Vries observed a fascinating phenomenon. What happened to the wild oat in unfavorable years?

  • It outcompeted cultivated oats.
  • It became extinct.
  • It developed new, beneficial traits.
  • It remained unchanged.

Correct Answer: It outcompeted cultivated oats.

Correct Answer Explanation: De Vries found that the wild oat thrived in unfavorable years, outcompeting the cultivated oats, highlighting the power of natural selection.

De Vries observed variations in the number of leaves on a single “five-leaved” clover plant. What did this observation demonstrate?

  • Environmental factors can influence the expression of traits.
  • The number of leaves is determined solely by genetics.
  • The “five-leaved” clover is a new species.
  • The “five-leaved” clover is a rare anomaly.

Correct Answer: Environmental factors can influence the expression of traits.

Correct Answer Explanation: The variations in the number of leaves on the same plant showed that environmental factors can influence the expression of traits, even within the same individual.

De Vries’s work focused on the importance of mutations in evolution. What is the primary force that determines which mutations become established in a population?

  • Random chance
  • Artificial selection
  • Natural selection
  • Mutation rate

Correct Answer: Natural selection

Correct Answer Explanation: While mutations provide the raw material for evolution, natural selection determines which mutations become established in a population by favoring traits that increase an organism’s survival and reproduction.

According to De Vries, what is a double race or an “ever-sporting” variety?

  • A variety that exhibits a continuous range of variation between two opposing traits.
  • A variety that only produces one type of offspring.
  • A variety that is highly unstable and prone to mutations.
  • A variety that is resistant to environmental changes.

Correct Answer: A variety that exhibits a continuous range of variation between two opposing traits.

Correct Answer Explanation: Double races, or ever-sporting varieties, exhibit a continuous spectrum of variation between two opposing traits, like striped vs. non-striped flowers.

De Vries observed that the “Nepaul-barley” had an anomalous flower situated on the inner scale of the spikelet. What did this observation suggest about the nature of mutations?

  • Mutations are always detrimental.
  • Mutations can be stable and persistent.
  • Mutations are always beneficial.
  • Mutations are always random.

Correct Answer: Mutations can be stable and persistent.

Correct Answer Explanation: The observation of a stable, persisting anomaly in the “Nepaul-barley” demonstrated that mutations can be stable and passed down through generations, even if they don’t seem to provide any immediate benefit.

De Vries emphasized the importance of selecting parent plants based on their breeding ability. What is a measure of breeding ability?

  • Hereditary percentage
  • Mutation rate
  • Environmental adaptation
  • Resistance to disease

Correct Answer: Hereditary percentage

Correct Answer Explanation: The hereditary percentage, or the proportion of offspring exhibiting a specific trait, is a measure of breeding ability, indicating how likely a plant is to pass down desired traits to its offspring.

De Vries described a phenomenon called “tricotyls,” which involves seedlings having three or more cotyledons. What is the significance of tricotyls?

  • They indicate that the plant is diseased.
  • They are a common feature of most plant species.
  • They are a rare anomaly that can be inheritable.
  • They always lead to the production of new varieties.

Correct Answer: They are a rare anomaly that can be inheritable.

Correct Answer Explanation: Tricotyls, or seedlings with more than two cotyledons, are a rare anomaly that can be inherited, highlighting the potential for unexpected traits to emerge in plants.

According to De Vries, what is a “syncotyl”?

  • A seedling with its cotyledons fused together.
  • A seedling with multiple cotyledons.
  • A seedling with no cotyledons.
  • A seedling with unusual leaf shape.

Correct Answer: A seedling with its cotyledons fused together.

Correct Answer Explanation: Syncotyls are seedlings with their cotyledons fused together, another common anomaly observed by De Vries in his research.

De Vries described a phenomenon called “peloria” that affects the shape of flowers. What is peloria?

  • The development of an extra petal in a flower.
  • The transformation of stamens into petals.
  • The formation of a symmetrical flower with five equal spurs.
  • The appearance of an unusual leaf shape.

Correct Answer: The formation of a symmetrical flower with five equal spurs.

Correct Answer Explanation: Peloria refers to the unusual development of a symmetrical flower, with five equal spurs, in plants that typically have asymmetrical flowers. This anomaly showcases how mutations can alter the shape of flowers.

De Vries noted a phenomenon called “petalody.” What is petalody?

  • The transformation of stamens into petals.
  • The transformation of petals into sepals.
  • The formation of an extra petal in a flower.
  • The appearance of an unusual leaf shape.

Correct Answer: The transformation of stamens into petals.

Correct Answer Explanation: Petalody is the transformation of stamens, which are typically responsible for producing pollen, into petals, often resulting in double flowers.

De Vries observed a phenomenon called “sepalody.” What is sepalody?

  • The transformation of sepals into petals.
  • The transformation of petals into sepals.
  • The formation of an extra sepal in a flower.
  • The appearance of an unusual leaf shape.

Correct Answer: The transformation of petals into sepals.

Correct Answer Explanation: Sepalody is the transformation of petals, which are typically colorful and showy, into sepals, which are usually green and protective. This phenomenon can alter the overall appearance of a flower.

According to De Vries, what are ascidia?

  • Pitcher-like structures formed by the union of the margins of a leaf.
  • Special types of roots.
  • Anomalies in the development of flowers.
  • The seeds of certain plant species.

Correct Answer: Pitcher-like structures formed by the union of the margins of a leaf.

Correct Answer Explanation: Ascidia are pitcher-like structures that can form on leaves, trapping insects and providing a source of nutrients for the plant. De Vries explored these structures as examples of how mutations can alter the morphology of plants.

De Vries mentioned peltate leaves. What are peltate leaves?

  • Leaves with the stalk attached to the center of the blade.
  • Leaves with a pointed tip.
  • Leaves with a serrated margin.
  • Leaves with a smooth surface.

Correct Answer: Leaves with the stalk attached to the center of the blade.

Correct Answer Explanation: Peltate leaves have their stalk attached to the center of the blade, creating a unique shape. This type of leaf structure showcases the diversity of leaf forms that can arise through mutations.

De Vries discussed the concept of “double adaptations.” What are double adaptations?

  • The ability of an organism to develop two distinct forms depending on the environment.
  • The ability of an organism to survive in multiple environments.
  • The ability of an organism to adapt to changing conditions.
  • The ability of an organism to reproduce sexually and asexually.

Correct Answer: The ability of an organism to develop two distinct forms depending on the environment.

Correct Answer Explanation: Double adaptations refer to the ability of an organism to develop two distinct forms depending on its environment, like aquatic vs. terrestrial forms. De Vries explored these adaptations as evidence of the adaptability of life.

What is the name of the plant species that De Vries extensively studied to support his theory of mutationism?

  • Oenothera lamarckiana
  • Avena fatua
  • Draba verna
  • Matricaria Chamomilla

Correct Answer: Oenothera lamarckiana

Correct Answer Explanation: Oenothera lamarckiana, commonly known as the evening primrose, was the primary plant species De Vries used to study mutations and support his theory.

What is the name of the wheat variety that rapidly deteriorated when grown near local varieties, demonstrating the impact of vicinism?

  • Galland wheat
  • Minnesota No. 169 wheat
  • Nepaul-barley
  • Tuscarora corn

Correct Answer: Galland wheat

Correct Answer Explanation: The “Galland” wheat variety lost its desirable characteristics when grown near local varieties, demonstrating how vicinism could negatively impact a selected variety.

What is the name of the wild oat species that outcompeted cultivated oats in unfavorable years, highlighting the power of natural selection?

  • Avena fatua
  • Draba verna
  • Matricaria Chamomilla
  • Oenothera lamarckiana

Correct Answer: Avena fatua

Correct Answer Explanation: The wild oat species, Avena fatua, thrived in unfavorable years, outcompeting cultivated oats, showing the power of natural selection in shaping the survival of species.

What is the name of the corn variety that rapidly lost its characteristics when grown near European corn, demonstrating the impact of vicinism?

  • Tuscarora corn
  • Minnesota No. 169 wheat
  • Galland wheat
  • Nepaul-barley

Correct Answer: Tuscarora corn

Correct Answer Explanation: The “Tuscarora” corn variety lost its characteristics when grown near European corn, highlighting how vicinism could lead to the loss of a specific variety.

What is the name of the apple variety that was produced by a single seedling, demonstrating the potential for mutations to produce new varieties?

  • Wealthy apple
  • Washington tomato
  • Giant of Zuidwijk strawberry
  • Madame Crozy canna hybrid

Correct Answer: Wealthy apple

Correct Answer Explanation: The “Wealthy” apple was a single seedling with a desirable mutation that led to the creation of a new variety.

What is the name of the water plant that exhibits two distinct forms, aquatic and terrestrial, demonstrating the concept of double adaptations?

  • Polygonum amphibium
  • Draba verna
  • Matricaria Chamomilla
  • Avena fatua

Correct Answer: Polygonum amphibium

Correct Answer Explanation: Polygonum amphibium, or the water persicaria, exhibits two distinct forms adapted to aquatic and terrestrial environments, showcasing double adaptations.

What is the name of the wild camomile species that has a form lacking ray florets, demonstrating a retrograde variety that has lost a specific trait?

  • Matricaria Chamomilla
  • Avena fatua
  • Draba verna
  • Oenothera lamarckiana

Correct Answer: Matricaria Chamomilla

Correct Answer Explanation: Matricaria Chamomilla, or the wild camomile, has a form lacking ray florets, demonstrating a retrograde variety that has lost a specific trait.

What is the name of the strawberry variety that is tall and was produced from a single seedling, demonstrating the potential for mutations to produce new varieties?

  • Giant of Zuidwijk strawberry
  • Madame Crozy canna hybrid
  • Washington tomato
  • Wealthy apple

Correct Answer: Giant of Zuidwijk strawberry

Correct Answer Explanation: The “Giant of Zuidwijk” strawberry was produced from a single seedling with a desirable mutation that led to the creation of a new variety.

What is the name of the blackberry variety that is a highly desirable hybrid produced through selective breeding?

  • Paradox blackberry
  • Washington tomato
  • Giant of Zuidwijk strawberry
  • Madame Crozy canna hybrid

Correct Answer: Paradox blackberry

Correct Answer Explanation: The “Paradox” blackberry is a highly desirable hybrid produced through selective breeding.

What is the name of the canna hybrid that has large and bright flowers, demonstrating the power of selection to improve traits in a cultivated plant?

  • Madame Crozy canna hybrid
  • Paradox blackberry
  • Giant of Zuidwijk strawberry
  • Washington tomato

Correct Answer: Madame Crozy canna hybrid

Correct Answer Explanation: The “Madame Crozy” canna hybrid is a highly desirable variety with large and bright flowers, demonstrating the power of selection to improve traits in a cultivated plant.

What is the name of the tomato variety that is upright and arose from a mutation in the “Acme” variety, demonstrating the potential for mutations to occur even in highly stable varieties?

  • Washington tomato
  • Giant of Zuidwijk strawberry
  • Madame Crozy canna hybrid
  • Paradox blackberry

Correct Answer: Washington tomato

Correct Answer Explanation: The “Washington” tomato variety is a desirable variety that arose from a mutation in the “Acme” variety, showcasing the potential for mutations to occur even in stable varieties.

What is the name of the strawberry variety that was discovered both in the wild and in a cultivated setting, demonstrating the potential for the same mutation to arise independently under different conditions?

  • “One-leaved” strawberry
  • “Five-leaved” clover
  • “Nepaul-barley”
  • “Galland” wheat

Correct Answer: “One-leaved” strawberry

Correct Answer Explanation: The “One-leaved” strawberry was found both in the wild and in a cultivated setting, demonstrating the potential for the same mutation to arise independently under different conditions.

What is the name of the barley variety that has a supernumerary floret, considered a useless trait, yet is highly stable, demonstrating that mutations can be stable despite not appearing to have any adaptive value?

  • “Nepaul-barley”
  • “Five-leaved” clover
  • “Galland” wheat
  • “Tuscarora” corn

Correct Answer: “Nepaul-barley”

Correct Answer Explanation: The “Nepaul-barley” has a supernumerary floret, a trait that doesn’t seem to have any adaptive value, yet it is highly stable, showcasing that mutations can persist even if they are not beneficial.

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