male flowers


Titan penis flower blooms in one of the oldest botanical gardens in the world

  • July 25, 2022

At the Hortus botanical garden in Leiden, Netherlands, a large, penis-shaped, corpse-smelling flower is blooming. It’s one of the rarest blooms you can witness.

The titan penis flower, in bloom. Image credits: Mihai Andrei / ZME Science / Hortus botanicus.

Amorphophallus titanum, or as it’s called, the Titan Arum Flower or the Giant Penis Flower, is one of the largest flowers on Earth. It can take up to a decade to bloom (sometimes, even more) and it has to be grown under special conditions — there aren’t that many of them growing around the planet. So when one blooms, it’s understandably a big deal.

The Hortus botanicus of Leiden, Netherlands, is one of the oldest botanical gardens in the world, founded in 1590. They announced that the flower was about to bloom a few days ago, which naturally got people across the country, not just in Leiden, very excited. It’s always hard to predict exactly when one will bloom, and since it lasts around 24-36 hours, they wanted everyone to be ready. Not long after that, on July 14, the bloom started, the first time the plant has flowered since 2009.

The titan arum flower in bloom next to the article’s author. Image credits: Tibi Puiu / ZME Science

We went there to witness and photograph it and it wasn’t just a feast for the eyes, it was also a feast for other senses… sort of. The titan arum flower is also called the ‘corpse flower’ for the pungent odor it produces during its flowering period (though it’s not the only flower to be called a corpse flower). It actually produces two blooms: the first part with female flowers and the second with male flowers. Both flowers grow within the same inflorescence, but the female flower

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