Giant plant flowers at Eden Project

The Titan Arum, a giant rainforest plant, and the biggest flower ever to be grown indoors, has just flowered at the Eden project in Cornwall. It flowered from 30 May to 5 June, and reached a height of 2.91m, towering over visitors.

PlantThe Titan Arum, a giant rainforest plant, and the biggest flower ever to be grown indoors, has just flowered at the Eden project in Cornwall. It flowered from 30 May to 5 June, and reached a height of 2.91m, towering over visitors.

This is the fifth Titan Arum grown at the Eden Project. It is a part of the recent Freaky Nature exhibit featuring poisonous, spiky, sticky, carnivorous and – in the Titan Arum’s case – smelly plants.

The plant is known to have a yellow, flesh-like spike that heats up when the plant is ready to attract pollinators, and gives of a smell repulsive to humans but appealing to insects. As a consequence, it is often referred to as the ‘corpse flower’. It took nine years for this plant to reach maturity, growing 13cm a day towards the end, and then flowering for only a few days before dying.

The largest ever Titan Arum flowered in New Hampshire, USA on 18 June 2010 and measured 3.1m. The first Titan Arum to flower indoors was in 1889 at the Royal Botanic Gardens at Kew, in London. The first-ever documented flowers in the United States were at the New York Botanical Garden in 1937 and 1939.

The Eden Project in Cornwall is a global garden where spectators can learn about nature and the world around them. It’s also an educational charity and social enterprise which focuses on creating learning experiences for students, running social and environmental projects in Cornwall and around the world, creating stunning gardens and carrying out research into plants and conservation.

This June, The Eden Project is showcasing produce including papaya, chilies, peaches, strawberries and nectarines in its otherworldly biomes near St Austell. Also coming to The Eden Project this summer is TV ethnobotanist James Wong, giving a talk on how to cultivate rare and exotic fruits from kiwi fruit to wasabi on Saturday 2 July at 7:30 at the Eden Project’s Gallery.

Information about all events can be found on the website, at www.edenproject.com.

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