Flower: The Photos of  the Worst Smelling Flowers in the World

Flower: The Photos of the Worst Smelling Flowers in the World

The Corpse or Carrion or Stinking Flowers

Unlike their sweet-smelling counterparts, the somewhat perverse carrion flowers and stinking flowers entice flesh and fecal-loving insects to their foul-smelling blooms in the guise of meat by their colors and fetid scents that typically smell and look like rotten flesh. Species and plant families vary, which include some of the largest and most bizarre flowers on earth. Some species may trap the unwitting insects temporarily with movable parts in the flower that catapult or maneuver them to ensure the gathering and transfer of pollen.
Carrion flowers are masters in the art of deception as they lure these insects into their blossoms. The flowers become pollinated but the fate of the insects is far more dismal — maggots hatching from eggs laid by them will perish from lack of any suitable food. Unlike typical insect-pollinated flowers, most carrion flowers don’t waste precious energy on rewarding their pollinators with copious nectar.

1. Rafflesia arnoldii
The largest flower in the world is the rare blood-red Rafflesia arnoldii known as largest individual flower on earth which can grow to 3 feet (90 centimeters) across and weigh up to 24 pounds (11 kilos), found growing on the jungle floor in the rainforests of Indonesia, Malaya, Borneo, Sumatra, and the Philippines.

flower bud of Rafflesia arnoldii

Another Flowers of plants in the genus Rafflesia (family Rafflesiaceae) emit an odor similar to that of decaying meat. This odor attracts the flies that pollinate the plant. The world’s largest single bloom is R. arnoldii. This rare flower is found in the rainforests of Borneo and Sumatra. It can grow to be 3 feet across and weigh up to 15 pounds. R. arnoldii is a parasitic plant onTetrastigma vine, which grows only in primary rainforests. It has no visible leaves, roots, or stem. It does not photosynthesize, but rather uses the host plant to obtain water and nutrients.

 

2. Amorphophallus — Titan Arum
The world’s tallest flower — which is actually a cluster of flowers — is the Titan Arum (Amorphophallus titanium), about 10 feet (3 meters) tall fully-grown, also commonly referred to as the “corpse flower.”The enormous flower grows from a corm of up to 20 inches (50 centimeters) diameter, weighing over 110 pounds (50 kilos). After a dormant period of several months, a bud will develop, growing at a rate of 1.5 to 8 inches (4 to 20) centimeters a day.

 

Titan arum (Amorphophallus titanum), which has the world’s largest flower head, is also called “carrion flower”. Rather than a single flower, the titan arum presents an inflorescence or compound flower composed of a spadix or stalk of small and anatomically reduced male and female flowers, surrounded by a spathe that resembles a single giant petal. This plant has a mechanism to heat up the spadix enhancing the emission of the strong odor of decaying meat to attract its pollinators, carrion-eating beetles and “flesh flies” (family Sarcophagidae). It was first discovered in 1878 in Sumatra.

Amorphophallus titanum, known as the titan arum, is a flowering plant with the largest unbranched inflorescence in the world.

 

Amorphophallus titanum is a carrion flower/stinking flower and is also known as the corpse

Unlike their sweet-smelling counterparts, the somewhat perverse carrion flowers and stinking flowers entice flesh and fecal-loving insects to their foul-smelling blooms in the guise of meat by their colors and fetid scents that typically smell and look like rotten flesh. Species and plant families vary, which include some of the largest and most bizarre flowers on earth. Some species may trap the unwitting insects temporarily with movable parts in the flower that catapult or maneuver them to ensure the gathering and transfer of pollen.
Carrion flowers are masters in the art of deception as they lure these insects into their blossoms. The flowers become pollinated but the fate of the insects is far more dismal — maggots hatching from eggs laid by them will perish from lack of any suitable food. Unlike typical insect-pollinated flowers, most carrion flowers don’t waste precious energy on rewarding their pollinators with copious nectar.

 

3. Stapelia — Star Flower

Stapelia are small, low growing, spineless, cactus-like succulent carrion flower plants. The flowers are usually flesh-colored, hairy to varying degrees and emit the odor of rotten flesh. Blooms in some species can grow very large, notably Stapelia gigantea which can reach 16 inches (41 centimeters) in diameter.

Plants in the genus Stapelia are also called “carrion flowers”. They are small, spineless, cactus-like succulent plants. Most species are native to South Africa, and are grown as potted plants elsewhere. The flowers of all species are hairy to varying degrees and generate the odor of rotten flesh. The color of the flowers also mimics rotting meat. This attracts scavenging flies, for pollination. The flowers in some species can be very large, notably Stapelia gigantea can reach 30 cm (12 inches) in diameter.

 

4.  Starfish Flower

No matter the nickname carrion flower, toad flower, Zulu giant, starfish flower these native South African plants are like road kill to flies.

The plant itself resembles a cactus, with clumps of 4-sided spineless stems. In September, the flower blooms (see above), producing large, flesh-looking, 5-pointed stars. The flowers have the characteristic rotten smell of carrion plants, but if you find one outside it’s not likely to make you gag.

The flesh-colored flower is covered with little white hairs, and attracts flies and maggots to the male and female sex organs inside its central orifice.

 

 

5. American Skunk Cabbage

This flower might not look so bad, but it’s called a skunk cabbage for a reason. Native to the swamps of the Pacific Northwest, the plant releases a rotten odor that flies and beetles can’t resist.

The Western Skunk Cabbage is tiny in comparison to the corpse flowers. But much like the titan arum, the Western Skunk Cabbage produces a relatively large spadix and surrounding spathe, but they are only a few dozen inches tall. The flower has is rare feature its blooming stem will get hot. This heat will melt the snow around the plant to give pollinators easy access.

Another fun tidbit: Bears will eat the skunk cabbage after hibernating because it’s a laxative.

 

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6. Hydnora africana (Stinking Root Parasite)

The parasitic plant Hydnora africana, native to the arid deserts in southern Africa, grows entirely underground.

These parasites live off the roots of the shrubby Euphorbia genus of plants. The red, flesh-colored flowers sprout from the sand, jam-packed with black beetles due to the flower’s dung scent. The beetles are trapped inside the flower by downward pointing hairs, but they spill out when the flower opens.

 

 

 

7. Eastern Skunk Cabbage (Symplocarpus foetidus)

 

 

8.Dead Horse Arum Lily (Helicodiceros muscivorus)

 

 

9. Dracunculus Vulgaris (a.k.a. the voodoo lily, snake lily, stink lily, the black dragon and dragonwort.)

This is truly a flower that goes by many names, some of which include Dragon Arum, Black Arum, Snake Lily, Stink Lily, Black Dragon, Dragonwort and Drakondia. The scientific name is Dracunculus vulgaris, and it is native to the Balkans, Mediterranean, Europe and Anatolia. It has recently been introduced to the United States, where it has thrived. This is an amazing plant that has the most stunning flower, which is made up of a spadix which can grow up to 120cm. The spadix is initially enveloped by the spathe which is a dark purple to black color. The spathe unfolds to reveal the almost black spadix, which releases a strong scent of carrion for about a day, in which time the sexual organs are ripe and insects attracted to the smell will distribute the pollen.

9. Dracunculus Vulgaris

 

 

10. Bulbophyllum Phalaenopsis

The bulbophyllum, is the largest orchid in its class, but it smells like dead, rotting mice.

6. Bulbophyllum Phalaenopsis

Not very big. Longest leaf is 20 inches. It gets a lot of light though.

 

Sources:

wikipedia

livescience.com

gardeninggarden.com

interflora.com.au

mother nature network

listverse.com

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