The World's Stinkiest Flower

By Meera Dolasia on April 26, 2009

Ah! Spring is here - time to stop and smell the flowers - except of course if you happen to be near a blooming Titan Arum, an exotic-looking flower that is native to Indonesia.

That is because when it blooms, instead of emitting a pleasant fragrance, this beautiful flower emits a stench that resembles rotting meat or garbage. Fortunately, it lasts only for three days and happens once in every six or seven years.

The plant does this to lure flesh-eating beetles, which become attracted to the stench and crawl inside, only to find themselves trapped in the sticky pollen. Once the pollen gets stuck to the insect's bodies, the flowers wither out, allowing the beetles to escape.

In the wild, the Titan Arum can be found only in the equatorial forests of Sumatra, Indonesia. The plants, which resemble a small tree, grow really fast - about a quarter of an inch every hour. Fully-grown Titan Arums, can reach heights in excess of 20ft, widths close to 16ft and weigh as much as 70lbs.

A few flower conservatories around the world also cultivate these exotic plants in-house. Amongst them is Kew Gardens in Surrey, London, which houses twelve of these giant plants. Two of them are expected to make history this weekend, by blooming at the same time - the first in the conservatory's 250-year history. 

However, instead of inviting visitors to come view this historic event, they are being asked to keep their distance - unless of course they like strong stomach churning pongs! PHEW!

sources:wikipedia.org, dailymail.co.uk, telegraph.co.uk

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55 Comments
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  • helloMonday, April 7, 2014 at 10:43 am
    wow thats yucky ewwwwww
    • ikyra_marie
      ikyra_marieTuesday, April 1, 2014 at 5:02 pm
      yuck
      • lolMonday, November 11, 2013 at 1:02 pm
        I think that the worlds stinkyest flower is funny!
        • Z0EMonday, November 11, 2013 at 12:29 pm
          Sweet!!!!!!
          • ashleyWednesday, October 23, 2013 at 12:03 pm
            i like the article because i love flowers just not stinky ones but it is good to know it a world's stinkiest flower cool.
            • headream100
              headream100Tuesday, October 15, 2013 at 6:10 am
              Have any of you people smelled that thing for real? Cause it's far worse than imaginable!!! When I went to Indonesia, I saw some of those flowers and they are awful!!!!!
              • zebralove
                zebraloveThursday, October 3, 2013 at 5:51 am
                AWESOME! My aunt visited one of those.
                • catvalintine
                  catvalintineFriday, August 30, 2013 at 7:22 pm
                  weird
                  • AnyonmusSunday, May 5, 2013 at 3:35 am
                    does any one know the classification of this plant?
                    • monyman23
                      monyman23Thursday, April 18, 2013 at 7:50 am
                      smelly

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