The plant with the largest inflorescence (cluster of flowers on a stem) also happens to be one of the stinkiest. Meet the rare titan arum (Amorphophallus titanum), otherwise known as the corpse flower, which can be smelled from miles away to attract insects like dung beetles and flies. The American Chemical Society’s Bytesize Science series made a video to explain the chemistry of the corpse flower’s stink.
This plant giant has been the news because one just opened for three days in Washington DC at the United States Botanic Garden Conservatory, having last bloomed in 2007. It was eight feet tall. Watch a time lapse of it opening:
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