Breaking News – Corpse Flower

Posted on April 30th, 2007 by

emily-h-titanum-043007m.jpgalexsticktitanum043007.jpgall-balleen-side-043007.jpgangle-top-m.jpgfrom-top-043007m.jpgThese photos are from around noon today (April 30,2007). Emily Hoefs, our greenhouse manager and expert cultivator of Amorphophallus titanum is pictured, along with Alex and the meter stick as measuring objects. Click on the thumbnail images for larger versions.

Alex and I were interviewed by a reporter from KEYC-TV (Channel 12, Mankato, Minnesota) this afternoon, and the piece will be shown on the 6:00 news report TONIGHT (possibly at 10:00 as well).

In addition, I was interviewed by WCCO Radio on Friday for a piece that ran on Saturday, and today’s Mankato Free Press has an article on our plant.

See the Titan Arum webcam for a live look at the plant. The image is renewed at five-minute intervals. We now have two cameras linked, one for a far view and the other for the close-up views that we’ve been showing. The close-up camera will be moved occasionally so as to provide different views.



  1. Emily Pelton says:

    Will there be a poster or presentation about the Amorphophallus titanum at this year’s Sigma Xi symposium? If so, at what time will it be held?

  2. Brian says:

    Yes, there will be a presentation at the Sigma Xi Research Symposium by Alex. It will be a poster, with Emily Hoefs and Britt Forsberg as coauthors.

  3. Kris Schaus says:

    ?Question? I have a news print from several years ago of a 7 1/2 foot Aroid. Looks exactly like your Free Press photo. Is this the same flower ?
    This flower is at Bonn University in their Botanical Garden if your interested. It has bloomed only like 4 times since 1937. Can the public come see your flower when it blooms ? Thanks, Kris

  4. Britt Forsberg says:

    Oh I am so jealous that I cannot be at Gustavus right now! I will say though, that I get the better end of the deal on smell… Seriously though, I have made all of my family and everyone I work with view the web cam and while I gesture excitedly at the computer monitor. I am so grateful to have frequent updates, thanks!


  5. Arne says:

    several individuals of /Amorphophallus titanum/ flowered about 9 times in Bonn Botanical Gardens since 1937. Interestingly, one though was that the Titan arum was hapaxanth, i.e. it flowers once and dies afterwards. This is definitly not true, since we brought some individuals to a second flowering period. A tuber normally needs about 3 or 4 years to flower. After every vegetative period, a dormancy is needed.

    In 2006, a tuber produced three inflorescences at one time, also something unknown for this species. We hope that this tuber once will flower again. Congratulations to Emily Hoefs and collegues for their bloom. Check out for it’s smell at night, around 10 to 2 p.m. – it emits a nearly visible odour. :-)

    Just for fun: Attenborough once aganin was the first person to present Titan arum in its natural habitat. Check out the sequence on youtube:

    Best wishes from Bonn,

  6. Brian says:

    We’re currently planning on allowing the general public to see the plant when it is in full flower, but are still working on the logistics. Check on this blog and on the Gustavus Adolphus web site
    ( ) periodically for updates.

  7. Joe Linn says:

    Brian, was it you who spoke about this at the April Orchid Society meeting? If so, thanks! That is how I found out about it. I plan to bring at least one other Orchid Society member with me to see it.


  8. Brian says:

    Yes, I’m the person who spoke at the OSM meeting. Check on this blog and the Gustavus website for updates on progress of the inflorescence and plans for visitors during the time when it’s fully open (which will be about two days).

  9. Bonnie says:

    A group of us are having a contest as to when exactly Perry will bloom (similar to the pools arranged with an impending birth of a child). Will there be an “official” date and time as to when it bloomed?

  10. Amy says:

    If I were in a contest, I’d say May 10th. =]

  11. Brian says:

    Yes, there will be an official date and time. Cindy Johnson-Groh, Emily Hoefs, and I will make the call – it will be the time at which the female flowers open and become receptive.

  12. paula says:

    We’re ready to hop in the car and come and see Perry and don’t want to miss the bloom. How will we know?

  13. Brian says:

    Updates will be given on the main Gustavus website, on this blog, and on the Titan Arum webpage.

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