Rare flower stinks up Truman State University

Courtesy Truman State University

Rare Flower is stinking up the Truman State University Greenhouse.

After eight years on campus, a unique flower called the Devil's Tongue flower is blooming for the first time. It is believed to be at the peak of its bloom right now with an estimated size of two feet in height and six inches in diameter.

The Devil's Tongue shares the same genus as the Corpse Flower currently blooming at the U.S. Botanic Garden in Washington, D.C.

It's also known as the corpse flower for the bloom's putrid smell.

The flower began blooming about two weeks ago and only blossoms once a decade.

Unlike most flowers which release a sweet smell to attract bees and other insects for pollination, the Devil's Tongue uses flies to pollinate, and therefore smells similar to a dead animal.

Aside from the pungent Devilâ??s Tongue, the Greenhouse is home to more traditional flowers. Currently there are several orchids in bloom. It also contains some banana trees and several pitcher plants, which are carnivorous plants that trap and digest insects.

The University Greenhouse is typically available for public viewing between 8 a.m. and 4 p.m. during the week. Visits can also be arranged through the Biology Department Office located in Magruder Hall 2004, or by calling 660-785-4597.