FORDHAM, The Bronx — Visitors to the New York Botanical Garden this weekend can get a whiff of something extremely rare and stinky.
The corpse flower, also known as the Amorphophallus titanum, is likely to bloom Saturday for just one to two days after nearly a decade of being nurtured by horticulturalists.
The plant, which is native to Sumatra in Indonesia, reeks of rotten meat when it blooms. Its smell is supposed to attract pollinators that feed on dead animals.
This is the Botanical Garden's third corpse flower. It housed two of the malodorous plants in the 1930's. The two plants attracted so much attention, that then Bronx Borough President James Lyons designated it as the official borough flower. It was kicked off its botanical throne and replaced by the day lily in 2000.
The flower grows from a giant underground stem called a corm, which takes seven to ten years to accumulate enough energy for it to bloom. Rings of male and female flowers grow around a a giant stalk that can reach up to 12 feet tall in nature.
For those wary of the odor, the Botanical Garden has a live stream of the smelly flower.