What is the world’s most dangerous plant? Try our kids’ quiz

<span>Illustration: Hennie Haworth/The Guardian</span>
Illustration: Hennie Haworth/The Guardian
  1. Agnes, 10, asks: what’s the most dangerous plant in the world?

    1. Castor oil plant

    2. Magic mushrooms

    3. Deadly nightshade

    4. The Whomping Willow

  2. Theo, 7, asks: why do cats have nine lives?

    1. Because their hearts are so strong that they can die and come back to life

    2. They don’t really have nine lives!

    3. Cats have lots to do, and can’t fit it in one lifetime

    4. Witches cast a spell to give them extra lives

  3. Felicia, 7, asks: why do my parents drink so much coffee?

    1. Coffee gives you energy!

    2. Coffee is addictive

    3. If they don’t drink it, they get a headache

    4. All of the above

  4. Lachlan, 9, asks: what makes nocturnal animals’ eyesight so good at night?

    1. They usually have bigger eyes

    2. They have special eye cells which are adapted to sense very weak light

    3. They often have a layer like a mirror in their eyes

    4. All of the above

  5. Poppy, 8, asks: what is the process that happens after we break a bone?

    1. It never really fixes, and your body just learns to move in a different way

    2. Over time, your body glues it back together

    3. Bones are made of a magical material. After they break, they instantly fix themselves!

    4. Doctors open up your body and stick the bone back together with extra strong glue


1:A - Based on the amount of the plant it would take to kill a human, the castor oil plant is the deadliest. It would take 70 micrograms of castor bean to kill an adult – that’s up to eight of its tiny seeds!, 2:B - Cats have one life, just like us! The idea that they have nine lives could have come about because when they fall from a height, they usually land on their feet. , 3:D - Coffee contains caffeine, which makes you feel energised. But caffeine is addictive. If you drink a lot and then suddenly stop, you can experience withdrawal symptoms, like headaches, grumpiness and tiredness., 4:D - Nocturnal animals tend to have big eyes, as well as cells that can pick up scattered, dim light. Some even have a mirror-like layer in their eyes, which makes the most of any light there is by reflecting it within the eye., 5:B - First, blood rushes to broken bone and forms a protective layer. Over time, this layer hardens into bone. During this healing stage, it’s important that you don’t move the broken bone around, so a doctor usually puts a cast on it to keep it still while new bone forms.


  1. 5 and above.

  2. 4 and above.

  3. 3 and above.

  4. 2 and above.

  5. 0 and above.

  6. 1 and above.

Molly Oldfield hosts Everything Under the Sun, a weekly podcast answering children’s questions, out now as a book.

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