Thursday, January 21, 2010

Stinky 'corpse flower' blooms at Milwaukee museum

MILWAUKEE (AP) — A huge flower known for its gag-inducing odor has started blooming at the Milwaukee Public Museum.

The exotic flower is called a titan arum. But it's better known as a corpse flower because it gives off an odor of rotting flesh.
The stinky smell helps it attract carrion beetles and sweat bees in its native rain forests of the Indonesian island of Sumatra.

WISN-TV reports that the seven-foot-tall flower started blooming — and reeking — over the weekend.

Corpse flowers can bloom as infrequently as once every 15 years, and then only for a matter of days. They can weigh as much as 170 pounds, reach nine feet in height and open to a diameter of three or four feet.