MR. STINKY, JR. IS PREPARING FOR A SMELLY DEBUT!
A three-foot Amorphophallus titanum (Titan Arum), also known as the “corpse flower” and affectionately known to us as “Mr. Stinky, Jr.” is one of the most spectacular blooms in the world, and it’s getting ready to bloom in the Whitman Pavilion this week!
The blooming of a Titan Arum is a unique experience, because of the rarity and the, well, stench. When one blooms, it gives off an odor akin to rotting flesh, attracting insects that pollinate the flowers deep inside. Our last blooming Titan Arum, Mr. Stinky, was in 2003.
It has been called the world’s largest flower, but, technically, it’s an “inflorescence,” or a cluster of flowers. A mature A. titanum can reach more than eight-feet in height and four-feet in diameter when fully open, exposing a magnificent deep crimson color. Stinky, Jr., isn’t expected to reach that height and diameter just yet, since this is its first bloom, but it is a spectacular, must-see experience nonetheless.
Zoo Miami is also celebrating the blooming of its Titan Arum. The incredible timing of both blooms will allow Fairchild and Zoo botanists to cross-pollinate their respective plants in real-time. The pollination and research will be done by Dylan Morales, a rising senior at BioTECH Richmond Heights High School, the world’s only botany and zoology magnet school. Botanists and scientists spend years waiting to pollinate an A. titanum, so it speaks volumes to the unique, once-in-a-lifetime opportunity that a high school senior in our Bio-TECH program is completing such a feat. Bio-TECH is a partnership between Miami-Dade Public Schools, Fairchild and Zoo Miami. The STEM, research‐based curriculum develops students to become global citizens with a deep understanding of the value of all living organisms for the sustainability of Earth’s biosphere.
Keep an eye on our social channels for real-time updates as our Stinky, Jr., blooms! Be sure to come by and see and smell for yourself!