Monday, July 19, 2010

Corpse Flower

A super rare occurence is happening in my town. The blooming of the Corpse Flower at the Houston Museum of Natural Science. Named 'Lois', there are only 29 documented bloomings of this massive flower, which when opened, emits a smell reminiscent of a dead cadaver. Hence, the name. Scientifically known as the Amorphophallus Titanum, the plant thrives in the rainforests of Sumatra, and blooms every 1-3 years.  With the largest inflorescence of any plant, the Corpse Flower casts an ominous and foreboding site -reminiscent of something you'd find in the Land of the Lost, or in a prehistoric period with ginormous vegetation. What caught my attention was obviously the buzz about the smell, and the size of the plant -standing somewhere between 6-7 ft tall, leaves with the inside color of deep dark purple and an enormous spathe that shoots straight up, erect like a spear...(also been called "Devil's Tongue").  Currently, 'Lois' is still waiting to bloom. In my city of H-Town, the buzz has been fanatical. Throngs of people have come out to see if the blooming has started, and currently nothing yet...but the anticipation is growing steadily day by day.... I'm hoping she'll open one of these days, because like I said, I'm actually looking forward to the experience of smelling rotting flesh. Weird, maybe, but it's the chance of a lifetime to witness a miracle of nature, and I'm not missing out by any means.

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