Smelly situation; corpse flower is in bloom in St. Peter


A rare plant with its own unique aroma is in full bloom at Gustavus Adolphus College in St. Peter.

The rare Amorphophallus titanum plant, better known as the Corpse Flower is blooming and on display for the public to view at the school. The plant, which is affectionately known as "Perry," began its short bloom and odor display at Gustavus Thursday. It will be mostly done by Friday night.

The Mankato Free Press reports that chemistry professor Brian O'Brien cultivated the plant in 1998 after getting seeds from a San Francisco physician.

"It's very popular. We have people who come from all over Minnesota," said O'Brien to the newspaper.

More than 7,000 people turned out to see Perry's maiden bloom in 2007. It's second bloom was in 2010 and that drew more than 5,000. Depending on the variety, the flowers bloom only every three to 10 years.

The flower is found naturally only in the tropical rain forests of Sumatra, Indonesia. The name comes from its repulsive scent that it emits after its bloom.

Perry is on display in the third floor green house of the Alfred Nobel Hall of Science at Gustavus in St. Peter. Visiting hours continue through 9 p.m. on Thursday and from 12-8 p.m. on Friday.

If you are unable to make the trip, or would like to view it without the smell there is also a link to view it on the Gustavus website.

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