Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Rare, Smelly "Corpse Plant" Ready To Bloom At Virginia Tech

Date:
August 29, 2002
Source:
Virginia Tech
Summary:
Just in time for the return of Virginia Tech students for fall semester, the Amorphophallus titanum, or "corpse plant," is ready to bloom, probably during the coming week, and emit its intensely powerful stench.

BLACKSBURG, Va. Aug. 27, 2002 -- Just in time for the return of Virginia Tech students for fall semester, the Amorphophallus titanum, or "corpse plant," is ready to bloom, probably during the coming week, and emit its intensely powerful stench.

A blooming Amorphophallus titanum, or titan arum, is rare, according to Khidir Hilu of Virginia Tech's biology department, which operates the greenhouse hosting the plant. The plant's blooming drew more than 76,000 visitors in 1999 to the Huntington Botanical Garden in California and 5,500 visitors to Fairchild Garden in Florida. At the Botanic Garden of the University of Bonn, Germany, the line to see the flowering titan arum extended over two miles

Located in the greenhouse complex next to the Virginia Tech Horticulture Gardens, the smelly plant can't help its malodorous contribution to the atmosphere. The plant invests a lot of energy during blooming to heat up the sulfur-based compound in the flower stalk, so the carrion-like odor will spread several feet away from the plant to attract pollinators--carrion beetles and flesh-flies. The amount of energy needed to bloom causes the plant to do so only every four to 10 years.

The blooms, however, last only two to three days, so visitors will have to be vigilant to see and smell it. A flowering stalk can be seven to 12 feet in height and three to four feet in diameter. After the bloom dies, a leaf stalk resembling a tree sapling will begin to emerge.

The plant was first discovered in 1878 in Indonesia, first cultivated at the Royal Botanic Gardens in England in 1887, and first bloomed in the United States at the New York Botanical Garden in 1937. According to Hilu, the plant has bloomed only about 20 times since its introduction to the United States.

The titan arum is in the same plant family as familiar house plants such as Dieffenbachia, Philodendrons, and Anthuriums.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Virginia Tech. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

Virginia Tech. "Rare, Smelly "Corpse Plant" Ready To Bloom At Virginia Tech." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 29 August 2002. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2002/08/020828062855.htm>.
Virginia Tech. (2002, August 29). Rare, Smelly "Corpse Plant" Ready To Bloom At Virginia Tech. ScienceDaily. Retrieved August 1, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2002/08/020828062855.htm
Virginia Tech. "Rare, Smelly "Corpse Plant" Ready To Bloom At Virginia Tech." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2002/08/020828062855.htm (accessed August 1, 2014).

Share This




More Plants & Animals News

Friday, August 1, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Pyrenees Orphan Bear Cub Gets Brand New Home

Pyrenees Orphan Bear Cub Gets Brand New Home

AFP (Aug. 1, 2014) The discovery of a bear cub in the Pyrenees mountains made headlines in April 2014. Despire several attempts to find the animal's mother, the cub remained alone. Now, the Pyrenees Conservation Foundation has constructed an enclosure. Duration: 00:31 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Ebola Vaccine Might Be Coming, But Where's It Been?

Ebola Vaccine Might Be Coming, But Where's It Been?

Newsy (Aug. 1, 2014) Health officials are working to fast-track a vaccine — the West-African Ebola outbreak has killed more than 700. But why didn't we already have one? Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Study Links Certain Birth Control Pills To Breast Cancer

Study Links Certain Birth Control Pills To Breast Cancer

Newsy (Aug. 1, 2014) Previous studies have made the link between birth control and breast cancer, but the latest makes the link to high-estrogen oral contraceptives. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Rare Whale Fossil Pulled from Calif. Backyard

Rare Whale Fossil Pulled from Calif. Backyard

AP (Aug. 1, 2014) A rare whale fossil has been pulled from a Southern California backyard. The 16- to 17-million-year-old baleen whale fossil is one of about 20 baleen whale fossils known to exist. (Aug. 1) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins