A beautiful yet potently putrid flower is slated to bloom in Vancouver.
The Bloedel Conservatory's resident stinker is now nine years old and is in a current growth spurt, having climbed to over two feet in just the last month.
Commonly known as titan arum or "corpse flower," Amorphophallus titanium gets its name from the unmistakable odour that it emits when it blooms — the tropical flower emits a smell that is similar to rancid or rotting meat.
The resident rare flower was named by the public as part of a city-wide poll; it bloomed for the first time in July 2018 at approximately six years old. And while it is aptly named Uncle Fester, it would smell just as awful by any other name.
“We are so excited to bring Uncle Fester back to Bloedel Conservatory, and can’t wait to have the public join us in experiencing the pungent scent explosion that, once smelled, is hard to forget,” says Bruce McDonald, Superintendent at Bloedel Conservatory.
“Bets are on as to when exactly the flower will open, but based on its already-larger corm, we think this year’s bloom is going to be bigger and stinkier than ever before!”
Bloedel notes that the smelly plant's growth rate will increase to a pace of three inches per day over the next two to three weeks, marking a bloom that will eclipse the 77 inches of the previous flower.
Native to the equatorial rainforests of Sumatra in Indonesia, corpse flowers are classified as “vulnerable” on the International Union for Conservation of Nature’s list of threatened plants. Most plants take seven to ten years to store enough energy to bloom for the first time.
You can watch Uncle Fester grow and make a prediction as to when it will unleash its powerful stench at the Bloedel Conservatory at the top of Queen Elizabeth Park.
Capacity is limited and tickets are only available online for designated time slots online. Tickets will not be sold on-site.