The Corps Flower in the Botanical Garden in Copenhagen
The emblematic Corps Flower, Amorphophallus titanum, was discovered in 1878 by the Italian botanist and explorer Dr. Odoardo Beccari. It is known for its piercing smell of rotting flesh and for having the world’s largest single inflorescence that can grow 10 – 12 centimeters a day when blooming. The specimen you can see in the Palm House of the Botanical Garden in Copenhagen is a gift received in 2003 from the Botanical Garden of Bonn. It bloomed for the first time in 2012 and has since then bloomed – and smelled – every second year. Last time was on 14 May 2022.
What you need to know about the Corps Flower
Experience a superb specimen of this emblematic plant
Blooming-events of the Corps Flower are extremely rare in the wild – up to 15 years can pass by between each bloom during the plant’s lifetime of approximately 40 years. However, the Amorphophallus titanum of the Botanical Garden in Copenhagen is an outstanding example as it has bloomed every second year since 2012!
Attracting pollinators by imitating a dead animal
There is a very good reason why the Amorphophallus titanum is commonly known as the Corps Flower because its strategy to attract pollinators is to imitate rotting flesh.
When blooming, the gigantic inflorescence can grow up to 10 centimeter a day before the plant unfolds its leaf sheath, releasing a characteristic smell of a decaying animal. Nevertheless, this is not the Corps Flower’s only strategy to succeed pollination. When the leaf sheath unfolds, it reveals an impressive color of deep purple and red, and the plant reaches a temperature of 37 degrees Celcius. All of which attract the rainforest’s pollinators from up to 8 kilometers away.
Timelapse: A camera followed the growth of the Armorphophallus titanum, in the Palm House at the Botanical Garden in Copenhagen, from 1 July until July 16 2014. Watch the inflorescence grow.
Natural History Museum of Denmark
The Palm House
in the Botanical Garden
1123 Copenhagen K
Adults: DKK 60
Children (3-17 years): DKK 40
Children (0-2 years): Free
Students (with student-ID): DKK 40
Season pass: Free entrance with a season pass to the museum
Tickets are bought at the Palm House in the Botanical Garden.