Corpse Flowers Blooming at US Botanic Gardens

Three corpse flowers are set to bloom this year in the USBG's conservatory.

WASHINGTON - The smelly corpse flower is back -- and this year there are three flowers ready to bloom at the U.S. Botanic Gardens in the nation's capital. 

The plants went on display Tuesday and are expected to make peak bloom between Aug. 17 and Aug. 22. 

The corpse flower, also called “the stinky plant,” is famous for its large size, pungent odor, and unpredictable bloom, according to the USBG.

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Once they open the blooms last 24 to 48 hours and have an interesting smell -- some say it's a combination of garlic, fish, diapers, and rotting meat.


More fun facts about the corpse flower:

  • It's the largest unbranched inflorescence in the world – reaching up to 12 feet tall in the wild.
  • The corpse flower has hundreds of flowers located it's base, known as the spadix.
  • It gets its name from the putrid scent it emits while in bloom to attract pollinators like the carrion beetle and flies.
  • The plant, first known to science in 1878, is native to tropical rainforests of Indonesia.

You can track the blooms progress here:

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The U.S. Botanic Garden is open to the public, free of charge, every day of the year from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. On August 17-21, the Conservatory will stay open until 7 p.m. while the corpse flower is on display, and will stay open until 10 p.m. during peak bloom days.

The Conservatory is located at 100 Maryland Ave. SW, on the southwest side of the U.S. Capitol. 

© 2018 WUSA-TV


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