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August 09, 2006



"...it smells like decaying meat."

And Germans call marigolds "Schtinkenblumen"!


Not sure if I spelled that right. As Bogie said in "Casablanca": "My German's a little rusty."

John E

I think this is a good place for....
"No, it is I who will eat YOU!"


Hmmmmmm.....corpse flowers, throw in a hunk of Limburger cheese, and you've got the beginnings of a romantic date on The Addams Family.


John E,

Based on the article, I think "No, it is I who will smell you!" might be more appropriate. ;-)


http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Durian>This must be its soulmate! :)


Jimmy, "a piece back"? I clicked on the link to your earlier post...it was nearly a year ago! That's a pretty big piece. :)


I remember reading about the corpse flower in Ripley's Believe or Not as a kid. I recognized the shape and size of the blossom in the picture immediately because it was such an interesting article.

John E

Augustine, in our neighborhood there's an Asian market that makes smoothies with various fruits, including the durian. Being adventurous I tried one. I could best describe it as tasting like a grilled onion smoothie. I hate wasting, but after struggling to drink half of it I had to toss it. The price of being adventurous I guess.


We have an exotic nursery nearby (Ann Arbor) that hosts a private horticulturist's corpse flower whenever it's in bloom. I suspect it's just so he can get it out of his house!

Marty Helgesen

One is about to flower in Brooklyn:

J. R. Stoodley

With such a huge flower, no wonder it only flowers every few years.

I wonder what the purpose of having such a huge flower is though. I doubt it could be to produce more seeds since orchids produce millions (or is it billions?) of seeds with modest sized flowers. Granted these seeds would be bigger (being animal dispersed) but still. I suspect (just a guess) that it may have to do with producing enough of this aromatic compound to attract enough flies. It is easier to evolve a way to produce more compound (like just by increasing size) than to evolve a more potent smelling compound. If you believe in that kind of thing that is.

Jimmy, it would be nice if you included some simple taxonomy in these botanical posts for those of us who are interested. You know, maybe just if they are monocots, dicots, magnoliids, or paleoherbs. That would help us understand what basic kind of plant we are looking at, especially in this case when there are no leaves to look at or countible flower parts. I will go back to your links and try to find the answer.

Also, nowhere did you mention that this is a parasitic, leafless plant. That adds something to its coolness factor in my opinion.

J.R. Stoodley

Plant taxonomy is confusing, but for anyone interested it seems this is a eudicot (what I meant by "dicot").

It is in the family Rafflesiaceae, which are tropical parasitic plants. By one classification system this family would be placed in the rosids (as opposed to the other main eudicot clade, the asterids) and specifically in the eurosids I, alongside things like violets, willows, passion fruit, mangrove, poinsettia, and flax.


Disney's Animal Kingdom here in Orlando, FL, has one of those plants out at Rafiki's Planet Watch! I work out there, and when it last bloomed, Animal Programs, or maybe it was Horticulture, places signs out at the main entrance notifying the guests and warning them of the smell. I'm sure folks went back to see it. PS: it was advertized as the Titan Arum. My $.25.

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