Titan Arums, also known as corpse flowers, are rare plants native only to the jungles of Sumatra. They are notable because of their size–they can grow to be ten feet tall–and because when they bloom, which they only do every few years, just a couple times in their lifetime, they emit an extremely strong smell. It’s been compared with rotting meat.
You know what that means, right? It’s a major event when one of these plants bloom, and you should go to see and smell it.
North Carolina State University is home to a Titan Arum, named Wolfgang, that’s getting ready to bloom.
The prediction is June 19 or 20, 2023, but nobody can predict with complete accuracy when it will bloom.
When it blooms it will emit the distinctive odor for a day or so.
Titan arums have a complex life cycle. It takes at least seven years for the corpse flower to bloom for the first time. After blooming, the plant will go dormant and move through leaf cycles until it restores its energy supply to rebloom – its main goal for existing. A typical bloom ranges from 4 to 8 feet tall. As it blooms, the corpse flower heats up to help spread its smell so that it attracts bugs to aid pollination.NC State University’s College of Agriculture and Life Sciences
The bloom will stay open, without odor, for another two days.
You can visit Wolfgang at Raulston Arboretum, 4415 Beryl Road, Raleigh, NC. Specifically, it’s outside the Ruby C. McSwain Education Center, next to the Cascade Fountain.
There’s no cost to visit. The Arboretum is open from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday. On Mondays to Thursdays it normally closes at 4:30 p.m., but it will stay open until 8 p.m. if the corpse flower blooms on a weekday.
NC State will be updating the progress of the corpse flower here: https://sites.google.com/ncsu.edu/wolfgangthecorpseflower/
In addition, there’s a livestream at go.ncsu.edu/corpseflowerlive, although, sadly, no smellstream. Follow #StinkyPack on social media to follow the progress.