Corpse flower blooming at UW-Madison greenhouse

Stinky corpse flower blooming at University of Wisconsin-Madison greenhouse

The University of Wisconsin-Madison says a stinky corpse flower is blooming at its greenhouse this week.

The flower of the Titan Arum plant is known as a corpse flower because of the foul odor it emits when it blooms, similar to rotting meat. The smell attracts carrion beetles and flesh flies that pollinate the plant.

D.C. Smith Greenhouse manager Johanna Oosterwyk says the plant started giving off a mild foul odor on Monday. It grows stronger as the flower blooms. The flower lasts just 24 to 48 hours before collapsing.

The plant’s first bloom was in September 2010. A second bloom started to emerge this spring.