The Huntington

The Huntington's Corpse Flower Is Open (but Not for Long)

The whiffy 'n sniffy specimen's frills are in full flower, but only for a matter of hours.

The Huntington
  • The Huntington Library, Art Museum, and Botanical Gardens
  • The rare flower opened on Sunday afternoon, June 19; it will be in bloom for 24 to 36 hours
  • A Huntington ticket and reservation (required on weekends and holidays) is required

The opening of a flower's petals isn't often associated with extreme drama or a rising sense of anticipation.

After all, it can take quite a bit of time for each soft and scented oval to move away from a blossom's centerpoint, and lingering nearby to watch the entire unhurried process would take a good long while.

But there are some flowers that are all drama, anticipation, and excitement when it comes to their big bloom moment. And high on that particularly peculiar list?

It's the Amorphophallus titanum, or Corpse Flower, if you prefer.

And there's a blooming Corpse Flower now wowing visitors at The Huntington Library, Art Museum, and Botanical Gardens in San Marino.

This is a spike-centered giant that blooms fast, once its frills begin to unfurl, and its ultimate run? It doesn't last too long: You'll want to visit it 24 to 36 hours once its showy spathe has fully opened.

The "corpse" part of this specimen's memorable moniker is easy to see, er, smell once you're nearby: It's a stinker, with a putrid fragrance that wouldn't be described as "rose-like" by anyone in the vicinity.

If you'd like to see The Huntington's current Corpse Flower, which boasts the nickname "Scentennial," you'll need to visit this wonder on Monday, June 20, for the blossom began to open on the afternoon of June 19 (meaning the clock is now ticking).

Good memory, flower fans: Scentennial did flower in 2019, making this a triumphant return to form for the stately plant.

You'll need a Huntington ticket to see it, and a reservation, too (the landmark requires reservations on weekends and holiday Mondays, including the official observation of Juneteenth on June 20).

If you'd simply like to watch Scentennial from afar, you can: There's a live feed on The Huntington's Youtube page.

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