June 10, 2005

Visiting the corpse flower with pro-sunsetters.

I didn't really want to go watch that sunset. I wanted to see and smell the Titan Arum in bloom. Yesterday was the big day for the plant, and the UW Greenhouse was open until midnight for the sniffing gawkers. Unlike me, the pro-sunset people I was with did not care about the flower. I stayed to get my share of lungfuls of the animal-smell of the gigantic flower and to struggle to get some pictures in the dark:

At the UW Greenhouse

The pro-sunsetters hurried right through and waited outside for me. They pronounced the flower a "nonevent" and complained about the illusion that it was the crowd around the plant and not the plant that was the source of the stink.

How did the flower smell? I thought it had a zoo smell. Maybe I've never smelled a corpse, but it didn't smell dead to me, just funky and animal-y. It wasn't at all fishy. More mouse-y. It wasn't nauseating or even terribly strong, in my opinion. I can't really understand the distinct aversion felt by the three persons who humored me by coming along.

Ah! I humored them about the lake and the sunset!

9 comments:

Goesh said...

Botany be damned, what we have here is a burgeoning phallic cult.

Paul said...

Are you sure, very sure, that this plant will not open up and voice a coarse demand of " Feed Me!!!?"
I wouldn't go near it in the dark.

nina said...

Oh, I don't mind seeing it (again), smelling it, smelling the people, etc., but it seems that all the above should take no more than one minute. After that -- the evening air beckoned.

Meade said...

Great pics, Ann!

Dunno if you take requests or not, but if you do, I'll bet there is a stunning twilight summer shot of those twin Redbuds, reflected in your glass dining room table and resplendent with their heart-shaped emerald leaves, just waiting to be snapped.

price said...

Is that a camera in the rafters above it? Will there be an awesome time-lapse to come?

Ann Althouse said...

Price: There are maybe four cameras in the room, and if you go to the linked page, you can get to streaming video (with audio, allowing you to eavesdrop on the visitors). So definitely they have the material to do time lapse.

Ann Althouse said...

Goesh: The scientific name for the plant is Amorphophallus Titanium. "Amorphophallus" means "shapeless phallus."

Goesh said...

I could better substantiate my claim if I could better see what some of those people are doing in the background of the picture. It doesn't look like field notes are being taken, but then I am often wrong.

Goesh said...

Shapeless schmapeless, I've never seen a better Viagra prop.