Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Stinky Lives!

When it bloomed at The Huntington in 1999, the gigantic Amorphophallus titanum (a.k.a. the Corpse Flower) created international headlines. A second flowering in 2002 was equally sensational. Now, one of the famous Corpse Flower’s offspring is getting ready to make its debut. Propagated from seed produced by the 1999 bloom, one could call it a genuine “son of Stinky.”
A Titan Arum in bloom is as rare as it is spectacular. A plant can go for many years without flowering, and when it does the bloom lasts only one or two days. Some people travel around the world hoping to see a Titan at the moment it flowers. For botanists and the public, being “in the right place at the right time” to see one of these magnificent plants in bloom can be a once-in-a-lifetime treat. This is the third time a Titan Arum has bloomed at The Huntington. In 1999, The Huntington was the site of the first known bloom in California; the same plant bloomed again in 2002. The plant blooming now is an offset of one of the seedlings produced from the successful self-pollination of the 1999 bloom.
Visit the Huntington website to learn more about the flower and when you can view it. Do it soon because the bloom doesn't last long!

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