What Makes the Corpse Flower Stink So Bad?
With people (and insects) flocking to the newest corpse flower bloom, we take a look at why this plant is so smelly.
The wait is finally over for Chicagoans who'd been looking forward to inhaling the odor of rotting flesh from a giant, flowering plant. The corpse flower known as Alice bloomed at the Chicago Botanic Garden on Tuesday, redeeming the garden after a corpse flower called Spike let down fans by failing to bloom last month (see the live video feed below).
To humans, the corpse flower is one of the world's stinkiest plants. But to dung beetles and flies, it smells like opportunity.
"It makes them think there's rotten meat somewhere to lay their eggs, and then that helps the corpse flower to get pollinated," Mo Fayyaz, the greenhouse and garden director at the University of Wisconsin's department of botany,