Corpse Flower Set To Open At Binghamton University On August 26

Posted: Aug 25 2015, 4:10am CDT | by , Updated: Aug 25 2015, 4:14am CDT, in News | Latest Science News


Corpse Flower Set to Open at Binghamton University on August 26
Binghamton University
  • Watch the Time Lapse video which was captured the first time Binghamton's Corpse Flower opened.

A corpse flower is ready to bloom soon at Binghamton University. And it will bloom for third time in 5 years.

It bears the botanical title Amorphophallus titanum. And in ordinary language it is called the corpse flower. There is one at the Binghamton University. It is kept in the greenhouse of the educational institution.

The corpse flower is about to set off its stink bomb of an odor. This is the third time in over half a decade. And so scads of people are arriving in a hurry to see the unfamiliar sight. The strange flower lets loose a volley of disgusting odors. And they resemble rotting dead bodies.

Five years ago, this plant species was brought to the university. It bloomed at the beginning and again about two years back. This flower only blooms every half decade or even after 30 years or so.

The greenhouse manager at Binghamton University, Laurie Bell, has said that the flower is nicknamed Metis. And it is blooming more often due to its setting. Its growth has been phenomenal. 

"It is clear from its tremendous growth rate that Metis favors this particular spot in the Tropical Room," said Bell. "After its last inflorescence in 2013, Metis' corm weighed 50 lbs. It was then in leaf for a year, and nearly doubled its size to 95 lbs. this spring."

Two years ago it weighed 50 pounds. Now it is nearly a hefty 100 pounds in weight. The corpse flower was given to the university as a donation. It started its journey as a seedling. And today it is a full-fledged adult plant.

Hailing from Bali, Indonesia, this plant uses its noxious smell to attract flesh flies. And dung beetles also land on it and they help in its pollination. The nickname of Metis is given to this corpse flower. It is reminiscent of the mythical Titans of Ancient Greece.

Metis was the goddess of learning and instruction. The corpse flower starts its growth in an orderly manner. It sends forth a shoot and flower. This then is shed and rots away. Later on a new outgrowth occurs. This goes all the way and creates the adult version of the flower.  

The rotting stench of the corpse flower is so nauseating. It is hard to stand besides it without wanting to retch. It almost feels like a dead chicken has been left in a garbage can out in the sweltering heat of June.

The flower is a marvel of evolution. It is proof that Mother Nature is the ultimate artist. Unlike a Picasso or Rembrandt, Mother Nature creates afresh. That is each time it fashions on the evolutionary scale. No life form is repeated twice.

And Nature breaks its own rules with great impunity too. There is simply no comparison between the natural world created by a super-intelligent source and the artificial world of man.  

Watch a live stream of the corpse flower here.

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<a href="/latest_stories/all/all/20" rel="author">Sumayah Aamir</a>
Sumayah Aamir (Google+) has deep experience in analyzing the latest trends.




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