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Jun 10 2011

I have rotten timing

I’m going to miss seeing this rotten-smelling flower:


The corpse flower unfurled its stately bloom at the UW Botany greenhouse tonight and was in full splendor by 10 p.m.


The stench was just starting to stoke up — the flower attracts pollinating insects by smelling like carrion — and had not yet reached its full power. Said to make the eyes water, it should reach full power in the middle of the night tonight. The greenhouse is open til 11 tonight, and reopens for visitors at 8 a.m. tomorrow, when the flower will still be stinky. The scent will fade, but the bloom still be well worth a visit all week.

And is it ever. A line of admirers snaked out the door to see the flower, with people waiting half and hour and longer for their chance to come in the steamy greenhouse, and climb a step ladder to peer inside the depths of the flower’s giant bloom. It’s that big.

Its outlandish, Alice in Wonderland appearance is the draw, figures Doug Ewing, who with a team of greenhouse techs at the greenhouse coaxed the flower into bloom after two and a half years of dormancy.

It could be years before the flower blooms again, so see it now!


Boooooooo! I literally work right next to this greenhouse, but I’m out of town for a week! Curse my timing. And opportunity to be a geeky biologist, lost.

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