Corpse Flower Millie Blooms at Missouri Botanical Garden in St. Louis

Estimated read time 4 min read

A unique event is happening at the Missouri Botanical Garden in St. Louis. A rare and endangered plant called the Amorphophallus titanum, or corpse flower, has started blooming. The plant, lovingly named “Millie,” is getting a lot of attention for its unusual features and bad smell.


Details About the Bloom

The corpse flower can take 5 to 10 years to bloom, and it lets out a strong, rotten smell similar to dead flesh, hence the nickname “corpse flower.” This specific bloom only lasts for 24 hours which makes it intriguing for plant lovers and other interested people.

You can see Millie in the Linnean House at the Missouri Botanical Garden during regular hours along with special free viewing hours from 8 p.m. to 12,30 a.m. The garden has also provided a livestream for those who can’t be there physically.


About Corpse Flower

The corpse flower is originally from Sumatra, Indonesia and is known for its big size, fast growth rate and peculiar odor. Its scent and look copy rotting meat which attracts flies that pollinate it. This blooming event marks the 15th time that a corpse flower has bloomed at the Missouri Botanical Garden since 2012.


Importance of the Bloom

This is Millie’s first bloom at this garden which makes it super significant since she was given by Greater Des Moines Botanical Garden where her sibling Horace lives.

Emily Colletti, a horticulturist at the Missouri Botanical Garden has been taking care of these corpse flowers for over two decades excitedly stated about this bloom and said that each bloom has its own uniqueness and is extremely eager about what an amazing giant plant like Millie can teach about plants.


Endangered Status and Conservation Works

The Amorphophallus titanum is listed as endangered in the International Union for the Conservation of Nature’s Red List of Species. With less than 1,000 plants thought to exist in its wild habitat in western Sumatra’s hilly rainforests, botanical gardens around the world are taking steps towards conservation. The Missouri Botanical Garden’s work with these plants displays their strong commitment towards plant conservation.


Details for Viewers

  • Place, Linnean House, Missouri Botanical Garden
  • Special Viewing Hours, 8 p.m. to 12,30 a.m.
  • Entry Fee, Free during special viewing hours, $16 for adults and free for children below 12 during regular hours. Members of the Missouri Botanical Garden also get free entry.

The garden suggests visitors to arrive as early as possible considering there may be long wait times and people who cannot attend but want to watch the event can do so on the garden’s livestream.


Purpose Behind the Smell?

The infamous smell of corpse flower plays an important role as it brings flies which work as pollinators helping reproduce by carrying pollen from one flower to another. It will form berries if pollination happens which will be eaten by birds like rhinoceros’ hornbill, propagating more plants.


Previous Blooms

A Corpse Flower named Octavia bloomed last year at the garden drawing substantial crowds with its distinct characteristics continuing to attract visitors every year.


Tips for Visitors:

  • Arrive Early: Due to high interest, expect long wait times.
  • Be Prepared: The smell can be intense, especially during peak bloom.
  • Stay Informed: Follow the Missouri Botanical Garden’s social media for updates on the bloom and viewing schedules

The corpse flower known as Millie blooming at the Missouri Botanical Garden is a rare event which gives visitors a once in a lifetime experience, as well as highlighting the conservation work for endangered species. You can enjoy this wonder by visiting in person folding livestream solutions, providing you with an opportunity to appreciate this extraordinary plant.

Celina Brooks

Celina Brooks from Mussoorie is a Writer & Researcher. She earned her Engineering degree in IT from Rutgers University. She is a technology enthusiast but loves writing and talking about local news as well. She is a jolly person with 2 children.

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