Two rare 'corpse plant' flowers expected to bloom this month

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Posted: Monday, June 16, 2014 3:17 pm

SARASOTA, Fla. -- A pair of plants with blooms as rare as their odor is pungent is expected to make a short-lived appearance this month in the Tropical Conservatory at Marie Selby Botanical Gardens.

"Seymour" and "Audrey" are expected to make their appearance this month. Seymour is expected to flower in the next few days and Audrey will follow about a week to 10 days later. 

Amorphophallus titanum, or Titan Arum, hails from Sumatra, Indonesia. It also has been dubbed the “Corpse Plant” due its mimicry of an insect-attracting odor reminiscent of putrid, rotting flesh.

According to Selby Gardens, it is rare to see this plant flower in the U.S. It made its first U.S. appearance in 1937 at the New York Botanical Garden, located in the Bronx, prompting it to earn the epithet “Flower of the Bronx.” The plant is not only rare in cultivation but is also listed on the World Conservation Union’s Red List of Threatened Species.

Visitors can view – and smell – the flowering giants inside Selby Gardens’ Tropical Conservatory from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily while it’s in bloom. Up-to-the-minute reports will be posted on the Selby Gardens Facebook page.

Seymour last bloomed in June 2012, and before that his last appearance was in 2005.

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