Introduction to the Titan Arum

Posted on April 12th, 2007 by

The Titan Arum (Amorphophallus titanum) can be found growing in the wild on Sumatra in Indonesia; it occurs naturally nowhere else. For several hours while in bloom, the flower will emit a powerful odor that is reminiscent of the odor of rotting flesh—explaining the popularity of the “corpse flower” and “corpse plant” sobriquets. The odor is used to attract the pollinators: beetles that are normally attracted to rotting animal carcasses. Aside from the notable odor and infrequent efflorescence, the Titan Arum also has the distinction of having the largest inflorescence known for any flowering plant.

A more detailed description of the history of the Titan Arum will be posted soon.

The Titan Arum webcam at Gustavus Adolphus College provides a window for the outside world to witness the rapid growth, and the hoped-for bloom, of this magnificent plant.



  1. Janina says:

    i have recently found an exemplary of Amorphophallus titanum in my home town, somewere in the south of Romania, Europe. It was cultivated by some neighbours of mine, without special care and yet the flower seems to be doing just fine. it is only 1,5 meters long and already bloomed several times. i would be interested in selling the plant to some bothanic garden. Would you be intereseted? if so, please contact me so as to get more detalis.

  2. Brian says:

    Janina, thanks for your information on the Romanian plant of A. titanum. We have several plants of A. titanum, so do not need to acquire more, but I think that you will probably be able to find a European botanical garden that’s interested in acquiring the plant.