Foul-smelling ‘corpse flower’ blooms at Indiana University

An Amorphophallus titanum begins to bloom at the New York Botanical Garden (NYBG), Thursday, July 28, 2016, in New York. The rare plant releases scent during its brief 24–36-hour peak, like the smell of rotting flesh, the reason the plant is popularly known as the corpse flower. It is the first time since 1939 that the NYBG has displayed a blooming titan-arum. (AP Photo/Kathy Willens)

BLOOMINGTON, Ind. (AP) — A rare tropical plant known as the “corpse flower” has bloomed at Indiana University’s Jordan Hall greenhouse for a short-lived and smelly display.

Greenhouse supervisor John Lemon says the plant’s stench was strong when its purplish bloom fully unfurled Friday night at the greenhouse. The blooms of titan arum plants emit a stench like rotting flesh to attract pollinators.

The plant remained in full bloom Saturday afternoon and The Herald-Times reports IU plant biologists say the bloom may last into Sunday.

The plant was given to IU in 2007 and this is the first time the 9-year-old specimen has bloomed.

Corpse flowers are native to Sumatra’s equatorial rain forests and are one of the largest flowers on earth, reaching 6 feet in height.

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