There will be something stinky in The Spheres this October. An Amorphophallus titanum, better known as a corpse flower, took up residence last month and will soon bloom.
It's a rare event. The corpse flower usually takes about seven years to produce its first bloom, which only remains open for about 48 hours.
It doesn't have a single flower, but rather a series of small flowers that are exposed when the plant blossoms. It is the largest unbranched flowering structure in the world, and can reach a height of more than nine feet.
While blooming the corpse flower possesses an odor of rotting flesh, which gives the plant its popular nickname. During this time, it also heats to 98 degrees to help the stench travel farther and attract pollinators.
The corpse flower is native to Sumatra, Indonesia, and is pollinated by flies and carrion beetles.
When not blooming, the corpse flower produces a single leaf that can extend to 15 feet in height and resembles a small tree. The horticulture team at the Spheres is livestreaming the bloom:
This plant, donated by the University of Washington, can be seen from 6th Avenue in downtown Seattle on the second floor of The Spheres.