'Corpse flower' bloom to cause a stink at Auckland Wintergarden

5:11 pm on 3 January 2020

An Amorphophallus titanum, also known as the corpse flower, has just started to open at the Wintergarden at the Auckland Domain.

'Corpse flower', Amorphophallus titanum, at the Christchurch Botanic Gardens.

'Corpse flower', Amorphophallus titanum, at the Christchurch Botanic Gardens. Photo: RNZ / Maree Mahony

The flower only blooms once every few years and last caused a stink at the Wintergarden in June 2015.

Auckland isn't the only one in line for a stinky summer as the Christchurch Botanic Gardens is also expecting its corpse flower to bloom.

Wolfgang Bopp, director of the Christchurch gardens, said the corpse flower smells like a a piece of rotten meat when it's fully opened.

He said it normally takes seven to 12 years for the plant to come to flowering size and the flower only lasts about 48 hours.

Bopp said the plant has measured over 80 centimetres, and with the outer layer getting dark, it's a sign that the flower may open soon.

He said people are waiting to see the blossom as it might be a once in a lifetime experience.

"It's something that so rarely happens. As far as we know, It's the first one that's flowering with us at the [Christchurch] Botanic Gardens and people want to be part of it, which is exciting," he said.

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