World's Smelliest Flower Attracts 10,000 Noses

Amy Keyishian

corpse flowerIt’s six feet tall and it smells like farts. Is it your husband? No! The Corpse Flower is blooming in Switzerland!

Known scientifically as Amorphophallus titanum, the corpse flower grows in the rain forests of Indonesia. It blooms only rarely, and that’s a good thing -- because it smells like rotting flesh. Why? Well, to attract carrion beetles, of course, which pollinate the flower and allow it to reproduce.

Wow, Nature. Crack a window.

The Basel Botanical Garden has had a corpse flower for the last 17 years, but it has never bloomed before. In fact, there have been only 134 recorded blooms outside of the rain forest -- though two more happened within the past week, one in Hawaii and one in Ohio.

People got so excited, the garden had to stay open 24 hours during the two to three days the flower was blooming, and 10,000 people are estimated to have flocked in to see (and smell) the super-colossal blossom.

It’s also insanely spooky-looking and grows so fast -- from little shoot to full-on funkenstein in just a month -- that I, for one, wouldn’t go near it.

Well, not without a clothespin on my nose and a bottle of weed killer.

Would you go just to see how smelly it is? Would you put up with a stinky bloom if it meant your garden would be world-famous?


Photo via D.H.Parks/Flickr

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