TUCSON, AZ - For the first time in its history, Tucson Botanical Gardens has a blooming corpse flower.
The corpse flower, which gets its name from the "rotting flesh" odor it emits, is extremely rare and unpredictable. It opened its pungent petals on Monday, April 23.
"Corpse flowers are considered rare in the world of botanic gardens," said Michelle Conklin, executive director of TBG. "There have been about 100 recorded cultivated corpse flowers around the world. The first recorded flowering in the United States was at the New York Botanical Gardens in 1937."
The plants can take up to a decade to bloom for the first time and the bloom only lasts for 24-48 hours.
Below is a Sunday afternoon update from the blog.
The plant can grow over 10-feet tall and is the largest flowering structure in the world.
Michael Madsen, the TBG butterfly exhibit manager, said Rosie was a gift from UC Fullerton and Edward Read.
"We believe Rosie is 9 years old," Madsen said. "This is her first time to flower."
Madsen said Rosie is blooming earlier than expected.
According to Madsen, Rosie will eventually produce small reddish fruit.
Once the fruit ripen, workers will take the seeds and attempt to grow smaller corpse flowers or share seeds with other gardens.
If you can't get to the TBG, you can watch the bloom live below.
- Rare corpse flower set to bloom in Tucson.
- $15 General admission, $13 Students, Senior & Military, $8 Children (4-17); Free for Members, Children 3 and under
- Tucson Botanical Gardens, 2150 N. Alvernon Way
- The flower can bloom at any time, but TBG will be open from 8:30 a.m. to 10:30 p.m. each day.
- There will be a members-only viewing from 7-8:30 a.m. each day