San Marino

Supersized Specimens Are in The Huntington Spotlight

A giant orchid just arrived at the San Marino gardens, and a massive corpse flower? One will soon bloom.

The Huntington
  • The Huntington Library, Art Museum, and Botanical Gardens in San Marino
  • The landmark will post when the corpse flower blooms; live video is tracking its progress
  • An orchid able to produce more than 1100 flowers just arrived at The Huntington; it is not yet on display

The Huntington Library, Art Museum, and Botanical Gardens has become known for its outsized elegance, its behemoth blossoms, and its verdant vastness (it does regally ramble across 120 acres).

The San Marino landmark is, by all descriptions, quite massive, and while tiny shoots and little leaves give the expanse much of its green character, so too do a variety of sizable sights, structures, and specimens.

If you like your nature to take up some spectacular space, you're in luck, for two notable and notably large plants are now attracting buzz at The Huntington to bee, er, be frank.

The first has its own live stream: It's a corpse flower, or Amorphophallus titanum, if you prefer, a tall flower that will soon bloom.

And when it does?

Prepare to pinch your nose, or at least attempt to wave off the fumes: This is a famously stenchy superstar, and people in the vicinity of a corpse flower regularly report scents of a putrid nature.

It also grows five, six, or even seven inches a day as it nears its big bloom, making it truly a bit sci-fi.

But sci-fi vibes extend to other wonders of The Huntington, including its brand-new orchid.

Photos were shared on social media, with this astounding tidbit: The Cymbidium Pauwelsii's 'Kessander' CCE/ AOS is "one of the largest orchids in the world."

How large is this lovely flowering plant?

"When last in bloom, it produced more than 1100 flowers on 43 spikes" a recent post revealed.

For an orchid, that is just... jaw-dropping. It's a plant that's sure to draw flower fans from all points, but keep in mind it has not yet gone on display.

It's nearly summer, and the longest day of the year, making us long for large, bold, and happily huge marvels.

The Huntington is home to many, including an easy-to-view corpse flower. Check out its live feed now, or visit the lush location, where reservations, in addition to tickets, are still required on weekends and holidays.

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