Published On: Sun, Sep 6th, 2015

Titan arum is the giant flower, said to be one of the world’s oldest and largest species.


Titan arum is a giant flower, said to be one of the world’s oldest and largest species. In July 2015 it bloomed at a Tokyo park for the first time in five years. The 2-metre-high Titan arum rarely flowers and is notoriously difficult to propagate and blooms for one or two days only. More commonly known as the corpse flower, the plant’s overpowering smell has been likened to that of rotting meat and helps to attract pollinators such as beetles and flies. Native to the rainforests of western Sumatra in Indonesia, the flower grows on steep hillsides between 120 to 365 metres above sea level, but its existence is now under massive threat from widespread deforestation.The International Union for Conservation of Nature has classified the species as “vulnerable” or just below endangered.

The majestic species of Amorphophallus Titanum (commonly known as ‘Titan Arum’) in full bloom rise some three metres above the ground, which makes them giants of the botanical world. Titan Arum was discovered by Dr. Odoardo Beccari in 1878 in the rainforests of Sumatra, in the Indonesian archipelago. It flowers rarely and unpredictably only for 2-3 days and emits a nauseating smell during first 8 hours of the flowering. Due to its odor which is reminiscent of the smell of decomposed mammal, the Indonesians call the plant a ‘corpse flower’. This plant with a huge spectacular blossom is cultivated in botanic gardens and private collectors around the world.


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