Corpse Flower

The unique Amorphophallus titanum, commonly known as titan arum or the “corpse flower,” is a large, fast-growing plant in the Aroid family. Few of these plants exist in cultivation, and they bloom only rarely and under just the right conditions. On the extremely infrequent occasion that a titan arum comes into flower, the intense, foul odor, emitted from a tall spike of small, crowded flowers, lasts just a few days.

Every year or two, the plant sends up one long, gigantic, rolled-up leaf that unfurls its umbrella-like blade during a period of about three weeks. The leaf lives for one or two years before the plant goes into a dormant period that lasts from a few months to a year. The inflorescence, a giant flowering structure, opens quickly, often in just a couple of hours. It maintains its full form for about 24 hours, with peak bloom (and the awful odor) lasting from 6 to 12 hours.

Since 2012, the Garden has hosted an unprecedented eight flowerings of Amorphophallus titanum plants, the latest in July 2017. 

See the complete Titan arum bloom cycle in this time lapse capture of the first arum to bloom on Garden grounds (May 2012).

Get a closer look at these unique plants in our image galleries from previous titan arum flowerings. 

July 28, 2014
June 30, 2014
October 17-18, 2013
June 19, 2012
May 19, 2012


"Octavia" the corpse flower has completed its bloom cycle. Thank you to those who visited the Garden to be a part of this rare botanical experience! 

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