What's that smell?
July 7, 2004 5:26 PM   Subscribe

Follow the blooming of the Corpseflower. The Titan opened about halfway during the course of the morning and afternoon yesterday, giving off stronger waves of odor as the day progressed. The peak odor and opening was in the early evening and by 10PM the pulses of odor became less strong. The daily progress of the Amorphophallus Titanum.
posted by jokeefe (7 comments total)
Webcam link here; scroll down.
posted by jokeefe at 5:31 PM on July 7, 2004

As of a couple of years ago, only 20 Titans had ever bloomed in the US. We've had a couple of bllows here in Seattle, see here Titan fun facts such as "also called Devil's Tongue."
posted by donovan at 6:53 PM on July 7, 2004

Important to note that it's not the largest flower in the world - it is, in fact, the largest inflorescence. </botantical nitpicking> The largest flower is over here. Both smell of rotting meat.

Very cool, though.
posted by Jimbob at 6:57 PM on July 7, 2004

Miami's Fairchild Tropical Garden has a great A. titanum site. Scroll way down for links to the garden's other documented inflorescences from 1998 and on.
posted by Stoatfarm at 7:07 PM on July 7, 2004

Holy fuck.

/botanical layman gaga-ness

I'm interested in why these huge monsters smell of rotting flesh, as opposed to something sweet? Both scents attract insects, but I've never encountered a garden-variety flower than stinks of rigor mortis, while both of these big fellas do. Wassup widdat?
posted by scarabic at 11:02 PM on July 7, 2004

scarabic -- My wife has two common varieties of houseplants that, at various times of the year, give off the smell of rotting meat to attract flies. Sometimes the stink if overwhelming. Once, when one of the plants as at its smelliest and my wife was out of town, I thought I'd be clever and take it outside and leave it there till the blooming was over. It took it back inside just before my wife came home. A week later, I heard a scream and ran into the kitchen. The plant which I had left outside, was dripping with maggots. While it had been outside, it had -- duh! -- attracted flies, who'd laid their eggs in it. Why the hell anyone would own a plant that smells like rotting meat, however, is beyond me.
posted by Faze at 5:31 AM on July 8, 2004

I saw the big stinky flower at the U.S. Botanic Garden last year. Oddly, it was on my way to see it that I saw the Lettuce Ladies at a House office building. Coincidence?
posted by MrMoonPie at 9:07 AM on July 8, 2004

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